Lamborghini builds LMDH racers for 2024

Good things come for those who wait: In January 2020, at the 24-hour race in Daytona, ACO and IMSA announced a joint new top class consisting of LMDH vehicles based on US regulations and supercars based on FIA/ACO regulations. From day one there was speculation about the entry of Lamborghini.


Originally, the entry into the Italian sports car brand was supposed to be announced in January 2021, and at that time it was still a secondary use of the Volkswagen Group platform developed by Porsche. Then the announcement should take place in January 2022, and finally in March.


Lamborghini finally gave the green light: on Tuesday (May 17) the brand, which belongs to the VW Group, confirmed its entry for 2024. Contrary to original plans from 2021, however, Lamborghini will prepare a prototype project for its own and not use the platform Porsche LMDH.


From 2024 onwards, Lamborghini will no longer fight for class victories in GT3 racing, but for overall victories in long-distance classics such as Le Mans, Daytona and Sebring.


“The move to the highest category in endurance racing is a milestone in the history of Lamborghini,” said CEO Stephan Winkelmann. “In the future, we will measure ourselves against the strongest competitors in the most important long-distance races in the world. By entering the LMDh class, we will achieve greater visibility for our sports programme, and we can also test the future technologies of our road sports with new first-class cars.”


Lamborghini

With the GT3 Huracan, Lamborghini has succeeded in the long-distance scene for quite some time.

Logical move LMDH Lamborghini

Although Lamborghini has not announced any other technical details of the LMDh project, Autos & Sport was able to speak to Lamborghini CEO Stephan Winkelmann and Sport Director Giorgio Sana about the background to the entry prior to the announcement.


CEO Winckelmann gave his perspective on the entry: “We started establishing Lamborghini as a motorsport brand in 2009, first with a single cup, and since 2015 with a Huracán-based GT3. GT3 is achieving many successes.”


According to Winkelmann, the introduction of LMDh was a logical continuation of the previous strategy: “There were several reasons for our commitment: first, costs are so limited by regulations, that even a factory of our size can compete in the first class.” Second, our heart has belonged to long-distance racing for some time, as We really succeeded with the GT3 Huracán.”


“The next logical step is to upgrade to Class One. We can now fight for coveted overall victories in great classics like Le Mans, Daytona or Sebring, because new cars are eligible to start in both America and Europe, which means we have high visibility in our core markets. “.


“,”rectangle”:” “,”sky”:” “}}” ga-track-vis=”article.gallery.inline.vis” class=”v-A_-article__inline-container”>

Porsche LMDH rider: photos of prototype tests

Porsche LMDH Spa test


Penske team

Special method with the chassis

Insiders have been expecting since March 2022 at the latest that Lamborghini will go its own way with the LMDH project and not resort to the Porsche-developed range kit: “We are free to decide whether or not we put our car on the Porsche platform as we go our own way”, as Winkelman says. “We now had the opportunity to take our own approach and seized that opportunity without unnecessarily increasing costs.”


The Lamborghini president confirmed a global deployment plan for motorsports and sports: “Our plan is to compete in both the World Sportscar Championship (WEC) and the American IMSA Series.”


In this context, Director of Sport Giorgio Sanna explained that Lamborghini views the LMDh project as a customer sport: “The Lamborghini philosophy in motorsport is very clearly based on the customer sport approach, which is the way we really approach it in GT3 racing, and that is how we will do That’s in the LMDh chapter. This means we won’t be entering full working teams, but we will identify the reference teams at WEC and IMSA with whom we will be working closely. We will communicate all additional details at a later time.”


Lamborghini Huracan Super Trofeo EVO2 (2022)

Lamborghini

In addition to the LMDH project and GT3 racer, there is also a home-made “Lamborghini Super Trofeo” trophy.

For the first time in the spring of 2024

The exact date of the race debut for Lamborghini’s LMDh has yet to be set, Sana notes: “The goal is to be at the start of the 24 hour race at Le Mans in the 2024 season, that’s our mission. It makes sense that we’ll be competing in WEC and IMSA races. Before that, but it is not yet clear whether we will participate, for example, in the 24 Hours of the IMSA Series race in Daytona in January 2024. The racing debut of our new LMDh car could take place later, depending on the car’s final development plan.”


The main reason for Lamborghini’s entry is the issue of hybrids, as CEO Stephan Winkelmann stated: “In terms of timing, it is ideal for us to start a new class of endurance racing with a hybrid race car – while ‘we began hybridizing our street models around the same time.'” Next year, we will showcase the design of the new LMDh cars, at the same time celebrating the Lamborghini brand’s 60th birthday, and also presenting the Aventador’s successor – with a plug-in hybrid. Lamborghini plans to hybridize all road models by 2025.


Lambo with its own engine

Die technischen Details für den Einstieg in die LMDh-Top-Klasse will Lamborghini erst zu einem späteren Zeitpunkt kommunizieren, doch CEO Stephan Winkelmann bestätigte auf Nachfrage von auto motor und sport MD immerhin: “Wirgene wermit-Prohden bejeim Motor LMDh he goes.”


This move appears to have been in the planning for a long time, because Lamborghini’s engine engineers are said to be already testing single-cylinder models. The crucial question of whether the LMDH racing engine will show a fundamental technical relationship to the street engines in the Lambo model range remains unanswered.


Currently, the range in the series ranges from the V12 (Aventador) to the V10 (Huracán) and V8 biturbo engine in the Urus SUV. However, the Huracan successor could get a new and more compact engine, insiders from Italy speculate…


Since Lamborghini is setting up its own LMDh project and not adapting to the Porsche platform, its engine is absolutely essential – and from Lamborghini’s point of view it is also clearly very desirable.

Lamborghini - Le Mans - Prototype - Concept - High Speed ​​Car / LMDh - Sean Paul

Designed by SeanBull

What would a Lamborghini Le Mans prototype look like? Stylist Sean Paul fired steam here.

Leger structure?

And what about the structure? Here is a silent one at the company’s headquarters in Sant’Agata Bolognese. The fact is that Lamborghini does not use the monocoque designed by Porsche Multimatic. After long-term partner Lambo Dallara was unavailable for capacity reasons, it appears Lamborghini is now working with the LMP2 designer Ligier.


The particular challenge in designing the Lamborghini LMDh will be to translate the unique and angular design language of the Lamborghini brand into the independent brand face of the LMDh prototype. Angular shapes are not always the best way from an aerodynamic point of view.


But all this is still in the future. Lamborghini promises more details in July 2022. In May 2023 they want to present the prototype and begin testing. The smoothing process should take place at the end of 2023, so that nothing stands in the way of an early start in the first season of 2024.


Collaboration with Iron Lynx?

Recently rumors have been circulating in the ring that there is an upcoming Iron Lynx/Prema and Lamborghini team up. Of course, Lamborghini officials are silent on this matter. Lambo CEO Winkelmann’s statement that the new independent project will not increase costs, even though Lamborghini does not use the Porsche platform, indirectly points the way.


He heard at Sebring that Team Iron Links wanted to climb to the top of a new endurance racing class, with a well-known manufacturer. Iron Lynx’s war chest is inflated by the racing team’s wealthy owners. In the background, the game’s makers are said to be courting the purchase of a Formula One racing team – as well as a growing commitment to endurance racing.


So it’s perfectly legitimate to speculate that Iron Lynx, who is said to have previously negotiated with Ferrari and Mercedes regarding the use of hypercars, could contribute a portion of the development costs to Lamborghini’s LMDh project.


This constellation would be ideal for a small manufacturer like Lamborghini. As a result, it would also make sense to use the Iron Lynx/Prema combo in races in the World Sports Car Championship (WEC) and in the US IMSA Championship.


But this is still speculation at the moment. Crucially, the LMDH class gained the sixth Lamborghini manufacturer. What has been fermented for so long will be fine in the end.


Leave a Comment