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First outing for new 2012 chassis

The new IndyCar chassis for 2012 and beyond has undergone its first on-track shakedown in the hands of Dan Wheldon on the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course.
IndyCar's future inched closer with the first test of the new-specification Dallara chassis that all teams will run from 2012.

The new chassis - dubbed the 'IndyCar Safety Cell' that will form the core car for all teams' racing efforts from next season - was given its first shakedown run on an IndyCar track at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course, the day after Scott Dixon triumphed in the Honda Indy 200 at the venue.

"It's a great day," said IndyCar's project manager Tony Cotman. "To see the work of many individuals in a very short amount of time out on the racetrack - it's the start of a new era for IndyCar."

At the wheel was Dan Wheldon, the current Indianapolis 500 champion, who was selected by IndyCar to lead the testing phase of the new car development project along with the Bryan Herta Autosport team.

The standard IndyCar Safety Cell was powered by Honda's new specification 2.2-litre turbocharged V-6 engine, with competition for engine supply expected to come from Chevrolet and Lotus next season. The new engines will supercede the old 3.5-litre normally-aspirated V-8 specification.

"It's a lighter car, it has more horsepower and it has a lot less drag than the current car," said Cotman. "Naturally on the right day it will go quicker and that's something that the fans have to look forward to."

The IndyCar Safety Cell will comprise the driver monocoque, suspension and basic aerokit, with the team initially having to provide only the steering wheel, driver seat and tyres. A chief objective of the new chassis is to reduce the costs of competing with the purchase of the chassis and ongoing replacement components.

However, teams will also be able to fine-tune the car further with custom aerokits (aero dynamic component add-ons) that will allow the cars to look very different from race to race and from team to team. Such kits will also allow the teams to make their car more adaptable for the wide variety of courses that the series now runs on, compared with the old chassis dating from 2003 that was designed exclusively for ovals and then retrospectively back-engineered to cope with street and road courses.

"Our time has been focused on making the car safe and stable so that it is possible to put different bodywork styles on it to make it look unique," said Sam Garrett, quality control lead for the chassis manufacturer Dallara, adding that the project priorities had been "safety, lower cost, something that looks unique."




Related Pictures

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Photo of the new 2012 specification Dallara chassis, unveiled at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway on May 10 2011 with the cars grouped around the historic
Photo of the new 2012 specification Dallara chassis, unveiled at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway on May 10 2011 with the cars grouped around the historic
Photo of the new 2012 specification Dallara chassis, unveiled at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway on May 10 2011 with the cars grouped around the historic
Photo of the new 2012 specification Dallara chassis, unveiled at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway on May 10 2011 with the cars grouped around the historic
Photo of the new 2012 specification Dallara chassis, unveiled at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway on May 10 2011 with the cars grouped around the historic
Photo of the new 2012 specification Dallara chassis, unveiled at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway on May 10 2011 with the cars grouped around the historic
Dan Wheldon takes the new 2012 Dalara IndyCar Safety Cell/chassis on its maiden on-track shakedown at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course. August 2011. [Photo credit: Michael Levitt LAT for IndyCar Media]
Dan Wheldon poses with the new 2012 Dalara IndyCar Safety Cell/chassis ahead of its maiden on-track shakedown at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course. August 2011. [Photo credit: Michael Levitt LAT for IndyCar Media]
Tony Kanaan apexes Turn 10 during practice for the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach on Friday April 17 2015. (Photo by Chris Jones for IndyCar Media)
Tony Kanaan, driver of the #10 NTT Data Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet IndyCar V6 races to a sixth-place finish Sunday, April 12, 2015 during the Verizon IndyCar Series Grand Prix of Louisiana at NOLA Motorsports Park in Avondale, Louisiana. (Photo by Russell LaBounty/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Tony Kanaan sits in his Chevrolet machine prior to practice for the Indy Grand Prix of Louisiana at NOLA Motorsports Park. Friday April 10 2015. (Photo by: Chris Owens for IndyCar Media)
Tony Kanaan on course during practice for the Indy Grand Prix of Louisiana at NOLA Motorsports Park. Friday April 10 2015. (Photo by: Bret Kelley for IndyCar Media)
Tony Kanaan on course during practice for the Indy Grand Prix of Louisiana at NOLA Motorsports Park. Friday April 10 2015. (Photo by: Bret Kelley for IndyCar Media)
Juan Pablo Montoya celebrates winning the 2015 Firestone Grand Prix of St Petersburg with third-place finisher Tony Kanaan (Photo by: Chris Jones for IndyCar Media)
Will Power (left), driver of the #1 Verizon Team Penske Chevrolet IndyCar V6; and Tony Kanaan (right), driver of the #10 NTT Data Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet IndyCar V6; celebrate with Juan Pablo Montoya, driver of the #2 Verizon Team Penske Chevrolet IndyCar V6, who raced to victory Sunday, March 29, 2015 winning the Verizon IndyCar Series Grand Prix of St. Petersburg in St. Petersburg, Florida. Power finished second. Kanaan finished third. Chevrolet took the top six places in the first race of the season. (Photo by Michael L. Levitt/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Scott Hargrove - 8Star Motorsports
Ganassi team mates Scott Dixon and Tony Kanaan talk tactics Graham Rahal during open testing at Barber Motorsport Park on Monday March 16 2015. (Photo by: Chris Owens for IndyCar Media)
Kyle Kaiser - Juncos Racing Indy Lights Dallara-Mazda IL-15

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Taz - Unregistered

August 09, 2011 6:38 PM

What's mediocure ? do you mean mediocre ? Bit harsh, some pretty good drivers there, maybe not F1 standard still very good. It's an odd looking thing, looks like an LMS racer and an indy car have mated.



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