Chevrolet announced that a new purpose-built engine will be developed jointly by General Motors and Ilmor Engineering of Michigan. The twin-turbocharged, direct-injected V-6 racing engine will have an aluminium block and cylinder heads, and will be a fully stressed chassis member supporting the gearbox and rear suspension.
General Motors/Chevrolet will join current IZOD IndyCar Series engine manufacturer Honda, which announced earlier in the year that it is developing a new twin-turbocharged V-6 engine to supply to teams in 2012. Honda - which has been an engine supplier to the series since 2003, and the sole engine supplier since 2006 when Chevrolet and Toyota departed - said that it welcomed the re-introduction of competition.
Both engines will be installed into the bodywork being developed by Dallara Automobili at a new production facility in Indianapolis which will have a ground-breaking ceremony next week.
“We've heard time and time again from fans that they want competition. We are excited to have engine manufacturer competition again in the IZOD IndyCar Series, beginning in 2012," IndyCar CEO Randy Bernard said. "Chevrolet brings a strong passion for racing, technology, relevance and innovation, which is a great fit for our new car platform. We are excited about the future of IndyCar racing with the addition of Chevrolet as well as the continued involvement of our long-time engine supplier Honda."
Chevrolet competed previously in Indy car racing as an engine manufacturer in 1986-93 and 2002-05 with V-8 engines, winning 104 races, powering six driver champions and recording seven Indianapolis 500 victories. Team Penske alone posted 31 Indy car victories with Chevrolet engines and four Indianapolis 5000 victories, and has already committed to the new engine. General Motors also used the Oldsmobile brand when it joined up to supply the Indy Racing League in 1997.
"Indianapolis Motor Speedway has been a proving ground for manufacturers since Louis Chevrolet, our co-founder, first raced here in 1909,” said Chris Perry, vice president of Chevrolet Marketing. “Our return to IndyCar as Chevrolet enters its centennial year is natural."
"We look forward to renewing our relationship with Chevrolet as competitors on the racetrack and giving the fans of open-wheel racing a spirited and challenging rivalry," said Honda Performance Development president Erick Berkman.