Alpine says it will continue and extend its endurance program. The brand will compete in the LMDh premier class1 – aka Hypercar – starting in 2024 with the support of Signatech, which is currently working with the Alpine F1 Team.
A French team – Alpine Elf Matmut took the third podium spot at LeMans this year, with the Alpine A480 Gibson driven by Andre Negrao, Nicolas Lapierre and Matthieu Vaxiviere finishing four laps behind the race-winning Toyota.
Alpine says it wants to add new entries to its list of achievements. From 2024 onwards, Alpine will enter the LMDh, one of the two regulations of the Hypercar category. Alpine will field two cars designed around an Oreca chassis and, bien sûr, an Alpine engine developed at Viry-Châtillon. The power unit will derive with all the expertise acquired in Formula 1 by Renault.
Since Alpine’s return to endurance racing in 2013 in partnership with Signatech, victories have come. First in the European Le Mans Series (ELMS) with the drivers’ and teams’ titles in 2013 and 2014. Then on the world stage in the FIA WEC, with two titles (2016 and 2019) and three wins at the 24 Hours of Le Mans in the very competitive LMP2 category (2016, 2018 and 2019), plus the podium in the Hypercar category this year.
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1 The Confusing Le Mans Top Classes
The top class in the FIA World Endurance Championship this 2021 year, including the 24 Hours of Le Mans, is Hypercar. Two types are eligible: LMH (Le Mans Hypercar starting in 2021) and LMDh (Le Mans Daytona h starting in 2023). In 2023, both types of cars will hit the track together in the FIA WEC and the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship. Therefore, they will be seen at the 24 Hours of Le Mans and the Rolex 24 at Daytona.
For the 2021 Hypercar class, only cars compliant with Le Mans Hypercar technical regulations will be on the track. This allows for a variety of architectures, specifically watch for a hybrid system on the front axle. In 2023, constructors having voted to follow the LMDh regulations will compete in the Hypercar class. In LMDh there will be four chassis manufacturers: Dallara, Multimatic, Ligier and ORECA. The engine, bodywork and hybrid system will come from the automaker in a move to save what has become an absurdly expensive class of racing.