Supercars investigating opening the door to hybrid technology
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Yeah, you read that right.
The Supercars Championship is assessing whether its future direction will include throwing hybrid technology into the mix for 'Gen3', in a bid to attract new manufacturers to the game and to 'move with the times' so to speak. Gen3 is expected to be the platform that follows the Gen2 regulation set that encompasses the Holden ZB Commodore and the upcoming Ford Mustang, with an idea that it'll be rolled out in 2021.
The move would align the series with the likes of Formula 1 and the FIA World Endurance Championship, who both run hybrid tech in their top tiers. But it's hard to ignore that the move to that tech hasn't exactly worked out for either class, with some of F1's core audience jumping ship and the likes of Porsche and Audi leaving the WEC after a handful of seasons.
Speaking to Speedcafe, Supercars CEO Sean Seamer said that “there’s a process that a team on the commission are working through between now and the end of the year to define what Gen3 looks like, the car of the future.
“We will include manufacturers in those discussions to get their feedback and their inputs and in terms of what works for them and make sure that we understand what their long-term product roadmap looks like. Hybridisation is obviously a key topic, so we’ll make sure we do our due diligence on that.
“It’s very preliminary. Like I said, the deep line, we’re working towards having that completed by end of the year, which gives us the full two years to work through development and implementation into 2021.
Just last week, we asked whether the Supercars Championship was in the midst of crisis. While our ultimate answer was no, it ended on the note of wondering whether a 'Mustang versus Camaro' direction is really the best one for the series.
Opening the rules to allow hybrid technology seems a wise idea on paper for luring new brands to the series, with the likes of Toyota and Lexus among those that have hybrids in their stable. The trick would be ensuring that they can stay cost effective, which is something greatly lacking in F1 and WEC.
Interesting times, eh.