SPEEDTV.com - In search of the real Car of Tomorrow This is an excerpt from a David Phillips piece on SPEEDtv.com that perfectly illustrates the relevance and effectiveness of the American Le Mans Series platform compared to other forms of motorsport. The url can be found here: http://www.speedtv.com/commentary/36287/
One of the hallmarks of the American Le Mans Series is its direct tie-in between what its participating manufacturers display on the race track and the products they sell in the showroom. It is a platform that works not only for elite marques such as Audi, Porsche, General Motors, Panoz, Acura and Mazda but also for manufacturers and product suppliers such as Michelin, Kumho, Yokohama, Shell, EPIC and VP Racing Fuels.
The Series also bucks the trend in today’s motorsports world of “spec” competition that discourages innovations relevant to developing future technologies.
Such relevance between racing and consumer brands cannot be found in any other form of motorsport. While that has been long recognized by the Series and its corporate partners and manufacturers, mainstream media outlets are seeing the benefits of the American Le Mans Series platform. What follows is an excerpt from a piece by David Phillips on SpeedTV.com:
Whether it’s the GT2 Porsches that spend part of their gestation on the production line with the 911 Carreras, Targas and Turbos destined for your local doctor, lawyer or hedge fund manager, or the American Le Mans Series’ commitment to alternative fuels now (be it “clean” diesel or E10) and in the future (E50 within 18 to 24 months; bio-diesel and perhaps hydrogen fuel later), Sebring celebrated racing as an incubator/proving ground for cutting-edge technology with direct applications to the broader automotive industry.
Indeed, the tone for the weekend was set less in practice and qualifying than in Thursday’s Motorsports Industry Association’s “Energy Efficient Motorsport” symposium at Sebring’s Four Points Sheraton (aka The Chateau Élan) attended by representatives from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the Argonne National Laboratories, Shell Oil (suppliers of Audi R10’s diesel fuel), VP Fuels (suppliers of the E10 fuel) and the major auto makers competing in the American Le Mans Series (as in Acura, Audi, Chevrolet, Mazda, and Porsche).
“Formula 1 may have high technology, but participants and manufacturers in Formula 1 will one day have to be accountable for the lack of relevance in automotive applications for everyday driving,” said Johan de Nysschen, executive vice president of Audi North America. “You will see the diesel engine in the R10 and its technology on the roads of North America within the next 18 months. This (the American Le Mans Series) is where we are developing the ‘Cars of Tomorrow.’”
In order to substantiate Mr. de Nysschen’s belief, we invite you to click on the following urls:
The next round of the American Le Mans Series is the Acura Sports Car Challenge of St. Petersburg. The race will start at 5:05 p.m. ET on Saturday, March 31. SPEED will provide a same-day broadcast event from 8 to 11 p.m. MotorsTV in Europe, SPEED Latin America and 7TV in Russia will carry the race live. American Le Mans Radio and IMSA’s Live Timing & Scoring will be available at americanlemans.com.