In a story we have been following Porsche seems ready to return to the WEC’s GT ranks as a full factory program starting in 2017. In an interview with Sportscar365 Head of Porsche Motorsport Dr. Frank-Steffen Walliser said it’s their intention to have two factory Manthey-run cars back in the WEC in 2017. Porsche enjoyed great success with Manthey, winning Le Mans, Drivers and Manufactures Championships.
Porsche is launching a new GTE contender later this year and it is belived, yet not confirmed (or denied for that matter) that Porsche has already tested the new car. Walliser is pleased with the rate of development of the new car, even if he won’t comment on the testing schedule. Germans right? What we do know about the new car is it will have a different engine and gearbox layout. While we originally believed the new car would feature a new to racing turbocharged power plant. However, due to regulations regarding balancing turbocharged cars vs NA cars Porsche may be distancing them from that idea. Porsche may opt to keep a revised version of their 4 liter flat 6. Again, nothing has been confirmed. “For sure with every new car, you need to have a deep look at the regulations to make the right decisions,” Walliser said. “I can’t tell you which way we went but I can tell you it was a long and hard discussion. A lot of things were discussed, like what you have to evaluate and to understand how the car works.”
Walliser also said that the chances for the factory backed squad in IMSA would continue into 2017. He actually went out of his way to mention that that statement was not a “confirmation” but the chances are good. Regardless how sneaky the Germans are getting it is welcome news to hear their factory programs are continuing. Especially when you consider the emissions scandal that all of the Volkswagen Auto Group’s brands have to deal with.