Well, it’s now official, Chevrolet is going to be racing in 2012 and not that go around in circles kind of racing either. The automaker will be the V6 engine supplier for Team Penske for the Indy Car Series in two years.
Those who are big into Indy Racing, and not just for Danica Patrick, will remember that Chevrolet used to supply motors from 1986 till 1993 and then again in 2002 to 2005.
The motor that is being worked on is a twin-turbocharged, direct injection 2.4-liter V6 that will run on E85 fuel. The block and cylinder heads will be aluminum, but we have yet to read how much power will be produced.
Penske Racing is the first team to agree to use Chevrolet motors, but the company expects to have more, as rules dictate that any team can use them if they so choose.
Hit the jump to see the press release.
Chevrolet will compete in the 2012 IZOD IndyCar Series with a new twin-turbocharged, direct-injected V-6 racing engine powered by renewable E85 ethanol fuel. The new purpose-built Chevy IndyCar engine will be developed jointly by General Motors and Ilmor Engineering.
Team Penske is the first IndyCar team to commit to Chevrolet power in 2012. The Chevrolet IndyCar engine will be available to all entrants in accordance with the series’ regulations.
"Indianapolis Motor Speedway has been a proving ground for manufacturers since Louis Chevrolet, our co-founder, first raced here in 1909," said Chris Perry, vice president of Chevrolet Marketing. "Our return to IndyCar as Chevrolet enters its centennial year is natural. At the same time this engine program will be a showcase for the efficient and powerful engine technologies that parallel new Chevrolet vehicles like the Camaro, all-new Cruze compact and Equinox crossover."
Chevrolet competed previously in Indy-style competition as an engine manufacturer in 1986-93 and 2002-05 with V-8 engines, winning 104 races, powering six driver champions, and scoring seven Indianapolis 500 victories. The new Chevrolet IndyCar engine program will reunite one of the most successful partnerships in motorsports when Team Penske introduces the Chevrolet engine in 2012. Team Penske previously tallied 31 open-wheel victories with Chevrolet engines, including four Indianapolis 500 wins.
"Our vision is to design, build and sell the world’s best vehicles – and racing is one of the best ways to showcase what we can do," said Tom Stephens, GM vice chairman, Global Product Operations. "Re-entering IndyCar racing will help us take our advanced engine technology to the upper bounds of what’s possible. And it will also provide a dynamic training ground for engineers, who’ll transfer the technologies we develop for racing to the products we sell to our customers.
"GM has become a recognized leader in implementing direct-injection technology in both 4-cylinder and V-6 engines," Stephens said. "Building on this foundation, our new partnership with Ilmor will give us even more opportunities to accelerate our advanced propulsion technology strategy. We’ll work to further increase performance, while using the least amount of fuel – and we’ll also learn how to get the most out of E85 ethanol."
The Chevrolet IndyCar V-6 will have a displacement of 2.4 liters. The powerplant will have an aluminum block and cylinder heads, and will be a fully stressed chassis member supporting the gearbox and rear suspension. Technical details and specifications will be released at a later date.
"We are excited to have engine manufacturer competition again in the IZOD IndyCar Series, beginning in 2012," said Randy Bernard, CEO, INDYCAR. "Chevrolet brings a strong passion for racing, technology, relevance and innovation, which is a great fit for our new car platform. We are excited about the future of IndyCar racing with the addition of Chevrolet."