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Porsche Working On Updates to 963 for Next Year

German manufacturer pursuing reliability-related updates to Porsche 963 for 2024…

Photo: Jurgen Tap/Porsche

Porsche is planning to roll out with reliability-related updates to its 963 prototype for the 2024 FIA World Endurance Championship and IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship seasons, with developments focused on several key areas according to the manufacturer’s director of LMDh factory motorsport.

Urs Kuratle confirmed to Sportscar365 that Porsche is pursuing changes to its Multimatic-chassied LMDh car, as the German manufacturer looks to take advantage of the platform’s ability to re-homologate certain components under specific conditions.

Unlike LMH-homologated cars, which are allowed five so-called ‘Evo Jokers’ through a car’s lifespan, LMDh regulations only permit updates under a different process that requires approval from the FIA, ACO and IMSA as well as the other manufacturers.

“It’s in the ruleset and the process is that we have to approach the governance bodies with our ideas and that gets approved or it doesn’t get approved,” Kuratle explained.

“We know what we’re allowed to do and that’s the window we’re trying to use.

“We have those possibilities and obviously we’ll use those possibilities.

“What can we do? We can homologate new things within the rules that we have. Outside of this window we can do software, setup things.

“What we have to do is understand our car and our package much better to catch up. Still, we’re not where we want to be.

“We are on the path but it’s still a long way to go.”

Kuratle confirmed that new components have already been on its European-based test car, which completed a multi-day outing at Spa-Francorchamps late last month.

A second test car, meanwhile, has recently finished build in the U.S., giving Porsche Penske Motorsport added flexibility in its development phase, which is believed to be focused on improving steering, braking and engine reliability.

“We’ve started testing them already because you have to know whether that’s the way to go or not,” Kuratle said.

“Our weak points are still the driveability of the car; that’s one thing. Performance-wise, it’s not so much to re-homologate the whole thing but we do also have reliability problems.

“That’s basically the main thing we are working on.

“There’s been reliability with the MGU and that’s [working] together with the hybrid partners but also on the car side we also have our problems as you could see in Le Mans and in some of the other races.

“These are areas we have to catch up to the competition.

“It’s not performance stuff; it’s reliability stuff. That’s exactly that window which is possible to re-homologate. That’s what we have to work on.”

Per LMDh regulations, the updates will be rolled out not only to the factory Porsche Penske entries but all of the manufacturer’s customer 963s as well.

Kuratle indicated there will be no noticeable changes from the exterior of the car, with the current aero package expected to remain locked in for 2024 and not be re-homologated.

“It’s significant [updates] in that they have to increase the reliability but it wouldn’t be anything the fans or people would see on track,” he said.

“There’s no big aero things. It’s mechanical things. The key is the reliability.

“We’re not planning a huge body update or something like this because the car is homologated within the aero window and that’s where it is and that’s where it has to stay as well.

“That’s also not our weak points. We have things like power steering and problems like this, reliability wise.”

John Dagys is the founder and Editor-in-Chief of Sportscar365. Dagys spent eight years as a motorsports correspondent for and SPEED Channel and has contributed to numerous other motorsports publications worldwide. Contact John

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