IMSA’s efforts to introduce hybrid powertrains for its Daytona Prototype internationals in 2022 could serve a secondary purpose that benefits NASCAR.
RACER has learned that IMSA’s plans to source, test, and introduce battery-based kinetic energy recovery systems (KERS) with its next-generation DPis is drawing significant interest from its parent company, NASCAR, which has taken an increasing role in IMSA’s DPi 2.0 planning sessions.
According to multiple sources, the most recent steering meeting pointed IMSA’s KERS initiative in a new direction where NASCAR will rely upon its sports car series to carry out a significant portion of the hybridization workload that will eventually appear in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series.
With IMSA’s technical team focusing on the adoption of spec KERS units making something in the region of 50hp, the blueprint established for DPi 2.0 would, under the new dual-series strategy, see NASCAR utilizing IMSA as a developmental test bed for whatever KERS solution that makes its way into stock car competition.
Of interest, the timelines for IMSA’s hybridized prototypes and NASCAR’s adoption of KERS could be somewhat divergent. Although hybrid NASCAR powertrains have been spoken of as something that could land as soon at 2021 with its new ‘Next Gen’ car, the most recent discussions have painted 2024 — two years after IMSA’s hybrid debut — as a more likely season to make its greatest technological leap.