At last, the time has come. After all the rumours, spy shots and teasers, Erin is finally ready to unveil the car that will spearhead its return to Le Mans and the World Endurance Championship.
Welcome, everybody, to the ErinSport GT18.
The ErinSport GT18 is an all-new prototype racer that continues the GT name and joins a long line of endurance sportscars designed by Erin. It marks a profound new direction for the Protoypes division of ErinSport, incorporating for the first time groundbreaking hybrid technologies that will revolutionise both motorsport and road cars too in the near future.
Photo by @titleguy1
Having been in development for almost four years, the GT18 is the product of hundreds of thousands of hours of research and development, culminating in an ultra-advanced motorsport machine.
Two powertrains have been developed; one is a more conventional RWD setup powered by a naturally aspirated 5.0l V12, derived from the one used in the Super Aventa. Producing over 690hp, yet remaining incredibly efficient thanks to VVT/L technology and delivery immense amounts of torque, it is a considerable shift away from the conventional engines used in prototype racers, delivering smooth and reliable power.
The other powertrain, however, is where the real innovation has taken place. With help from the X Department, ErinSport have developed a new hybrid technology that we are calling Electrogen.
Electrogen is a type of series hybrid powertrain that makes a major advancement over conventional forms of this technology: it has no large, bulky batteries. Instead of the engine charging up a battery and then sending power to the motors, Electrogen simply sends the engine’s power directly to the motors, with a clutch in the middle and a small Lithium Ion battery to handle any extra energy.
This means that when the motors don’t require any more energy to be sent to them - such as under braking or when coasting - the engine can disconnect via the clutch and send the surplus electricity to the battery, which is then used up next time electricity is demanded by the motors.
This saves hugely on weight and cost, and also means that this hybrid system doesn’t rely on a battery directly.
Power is delivered from a heavily tuned version of the same Pureon 2.6l i6 found in the Tauga, which is then delivered to two permanent magnet AC electric motors, the rear one of which is equipped with a two-speed double clutch gearbox (an acceleration gear and a cruise gear).
This allows for incredible all-wheel drive acceleration and rear wheel drive high-speed cruising, with a maximum power output from both motors of over 1000 horsepower.
The result of this is an incredibly efficient (in both its drivetypes), incredibly fast and ultra advanced race car that will define ErinSport for years to come and symbolize the world-leading innovation Erin is undertaking as of now. It’s a return to endurance racing, and also a reaffirmation of Erin and ErinSport’s position in the automobile world.
As of current, the ErinSport GT18 will be entered into two competitions next year. In AMWEC/WEC, an ErinSport managed team will run the GT18 Hybrid, including competing at Le Mans, whilst a sponsored team, ErinSport America, will run with the GT18 V12 in the Daytona Prototype Class in the IMSA Weathertech Sportscar Championship. Details of this will be released in the near-future.
||GT18 S1 V12
||GT18 S1 Hybrid
||Carbon Fibre body/Carbon Fibre Tub Chassis with composite lattice frame
||All-round double wishbones with pushrod actuated dampers.
||PureonPOWER 5.0l V12 Di VVT/L
||Pureon 2.6l i6 Di VVT/L
||7 Speed DCT, RWD
||F: Single speed, R: Two-speed sequential, AWD
||693hp @ 9100rpm, 440 ft-lb @ 7200rpm
||Engine: 330hp @ 8700rpm, Motors: ~550hp at max output, 870 ft-lb @ all rpm (each)
A new generation of endurance racer is upon us, pushing the advancements in hybrid technology and engineering capability further than ever before. The GT18 is the most efficient, most advanced and undoubtedly the fastest prototype racer that ErinSport have ever developed.
Electrogen is also certainly not just for motorsport. The technology on this car, both a product of previous R&D and ongoing projects, will be making its way to cars in the near-future. Further announcements will be made regarding this next year.
For now, ErinSport prepares to return Erin to where it made its name and built its motorsport legacy, Endurance racing.
It’s good to be back, folks!
Big thanks to @titleguy1 for creating a fantastically gorgeous rendering of the livery on the car, your work is so, so appreciated.
Thoughts, comments, critiques, questions, the lot, etc, are all most welcome!