The German ADESS design group has put its plans to build an LMP1 prototype for the 2014 World Endurance Championship on hold to focus on an entry into the P2 market next year.
ADESS revealed its design for an LMP1 customer car built to the 2014 P1 rulebook in June, but the failure to attract a buyer has led to the decision to refocus its resources on plans for an LMP2 coupe.
“We started working on P1 development last November, but we were unable to find an customer for the project, so we have decided to concentrate on the P2,” ADESS boss Stephane Chosse said. “The final decision was made in August, but we had been working on the LMP2 for some time and we can use a lot of the information from the development of the P1 on the P2.”
Chosse, who worked with Ligier, Sauber, Toyota and HRT in Formula 1, stressed that the cars were two separate designs, but said that the P2 car, to be known as the ADESS 02, shared its monocoque with the LMP1. The first car could be delivered in time for the start of next year’s WEC or the European Le Mans Series if a customer was forthcoming imminently, according to Chosse.
“The car design is not finished, but we are on schedule to have a car ready for the beginning of next season,” he said.
The ADESS 02 is being designed to accept a variety of normally aspirated and turbocharged engine options. ADESS has not set a minimum number of orders it needs to receive before giving the project the go-ahead.
“We are confident that over a number of years the project would become economically viable,” explained Chosse. “If we work with one team next year and the car shows good performance, we will be in a position to sell more.”
The P1 project could be revived if a customer was forthcoming, Chosse added.
“We are looking for the kind of deal that ORECA has with Rebellion [to build its own car for next year],” he said. “We don’t want to just sell a car, we want a development partner.”
ADESS designed the Lotus T128 LMP2 run by the Kodewa-run Lotus team in this year’s WEC. The legal battle between the two companies, which came to a head in the week of the Le Mans 24 Hours, is still ongoing.