IndyCar on track for first hybrid test next month

Brett Farmer/Motorsport Images

IndyCar on track for first hybrid test next month


IndyCar on track for first hybrid test next month


Plans are in motion for the NTT IndyCar Series to make its long-awaited track testing debut with its full hybrid engine package that will debut in competition in 2024.

“We still plan to be on track in June,” IndyCar’s managing director of engines Darren Sansum told RACER. “We have stuff on the dyno now.”

It’s believed a three-day testing window starting on June 27 has been reserved on the Indianapolis road course for Chevrolet and Honda to put their new 2.4-liter twin-turbo V6 powerplants to work with the 100hp MAHLE energy recovery systems installed in the cars. Barring any delays, it will be a major achievement for the series and its ERS vendor as supply-chain delays have created numerous postponements in running the full hybrid package.

In late March, the first on-track outing with the 2.4-liter engines took place on the same road course where Chevy and Honda were enamored with the reliability demonstrated by their respective motors. Using ballast positioned in the bellhousing — the structure that connects the transmission and rear suspension to the back of the engine — to simulate the weight of the ERS unit, the test teams were able to get a feel for how the system’s mass affected the handling.

With the MAHLE units installed, the Chevy and Honda test teams and their chosen drivers will be able to sample the system’s electronic horsepower for the first time and provide the series and vendor with feedback on its harvesting performance under braking and deployment through the push-to-pass button on the steering wheel.