2007 Porsche RS Spyder LMP2 debuts

NEW PORSCHE RS SPYDER FOR 2007 SEASON DEBUTS AT PARIS AUTO SHOW ATLANTA - September 28 -- Dr. Ing. h.c. F. Porsche AG, Stuttgart, has revealed the 2007 Porsche RS Spyder LMP2 prototype race car at the Paris Motor Show, the Mondial de l' ...


ATLANTA - September 28 -- Dr. Ing. h.c. F. Porsche AG, Stuttgart, has revealed the 2007 Porsche RS Spyder LMP2 prototype race car at the Paris Motor Show, the Mondial de l' Automobile, during the media days before the September 30 - October 15 public debut of the sleek new car.

Developed at Porsche's research and development center in Weissach near Stuttgart, this racing car is an evolution of the sports prototype currently battling for the LMP2 Championship in the American Le Mans Series (ALMS) under the guidance of Penske Motorsports. Next year the new RS Spyder is to be raced by various customer teams in a number of countries, thus making its international debut.

Porsche has developed and built the open cockpit RS Spyder in accordance with the rules and regulations of the French Automobile Club de'l Ouest (A.C.O.) sanctioning body under the designation Le Mans Prototypes 2 . This means that this racing car may be entered, in the American Le Mans Series (ALMS), the European Le Mans Series (LMS), and the 24 Hours of Le Mans.

Choosing the lightest of two A.C.O. prototype racing categories, Porsche is facing competition at the highest level of technology and at the same time limiting the cost of racing the car with a view to future entry of the RS Spyder by customers.

Using thorough computer simulations and tests in the wind tunnel, Porsche engineers have designed an updated and upgraded chassis for next season. Optimisation of the wing and rear diffuser serves not only to enhance the aerodynamic efficiency of the car, but also to improve the range of set-up options for different kinds of racetracks. At the same time, the carbon-fibre body has been modified for an even higher standard of ease and convenience for service and maintenance. And last but not least, the thermodynamic qualities of the RS Spyder have been optimized by re-designing the air ducts leading into and out of the radiators.

Fitted with mandated air restrictors, the 3.4-liter, 90-degree, V8 racing engine developed by Porsche for long-distance events produces 503 bhp, an increase in output over the former model by 23 bhp. The weight of the car is also in line with the A.C.O. Regulations, with the new RS Spyder weighing in at exactly 775 kilos or 1709 lb.

The sequential six-speed gearbox with its three-plate carbon-fibre clutch is fitted in length- wise and is integrated into the chassis as a load-bearing component. Gears are shifted directly from paddles on the steering wheel. Porsche has upgraded the gearbox for the forthcoming racing season with the primary objective to make the gearshift even more reliable, smoother and less demanding on all the components involved, and at the same time even more precise.

This prototype sports car is based on a carbon-fibre monocoque chassis, with double wish- bone track arms for the front wheels attached to the ultra-stiff and light body structure. The double wishbones at the rear, in turn, are fastened to a carbon-fibre element bolted on to the transmission housing. Torsion springs and pushrod-operated four-way gas pressure dampers, as well as bending-leaf anti-roll bars, round off the suspension of the RS Spyder modified for even faster and more precise handling in 2007.

Great attention has also been given to the ongoing development of various other compo- nents of the car such as the central electrics, the hydraulic system, and the power steering.

The brakes feature double master cylinders, variable brake force distribution and inner- vented carbon-fibre discs measuring 380 millimetres or 14.96" in diameter on the front axle and 355 millimetres or 13.98" at the rear.

The racing tires for this prototype come from Michelin as a Porsche's partner included from the beginning in the development of the RS Spyder.

While the 2007 RS Spyder is being shown in Paris, the current RS Spyder is completing its first its first full racing season. With two races remaining in the American Le Mans Series (ALMS), the Penske Motorsports-prepared car is trying to close out the Driver's, Team and Manufacturer's Championships - all of which they lead atthe moment. And, besides the most class wins in the Le Mans Prototype Class 2, this light and agile Porsche also scored a sensational one-two overall victory on the winding Mid-Ohio race track in May, beating LMP1 prototypes despite their extra power and brakes given to the top class by regulation.

Specifications RS Spyder (2007)

Two-seater, open sports prototype according to A.C.O. Regulations; LMP2 (Le Mans Prototype 2) class.

Suitable for racing in the ALMS, LMS, further championships and long-distance races.

Carbon-fibre reinforced monocoque; front, side and rear body sections made of reinforced carbon/kevlar; underfloor cover with skid block (A.C.O.) and rear diffuser; rear wing adjustable on two wing elements; six-point seat belt with Head And Neck Support System (HANS) modification; fire extinguishing system; helmet protection to FIA and A.C.O. Regulations; three-point pneumatic car jack.

Variable as a function of rear wing and body height

Power unit:
Eight-cylinder V-engine with 90-degree cylinder bank angle; watercooled; four valves per cylinder; oil cooling with oil/water heat exchanger; intake system with a 44 mm (1.73") restrictor for ALMS Regulations; intake system with individual throttle butterflies; dry sump lubrication with separate oil tank; Bosch MS 4.2 electronic engine management; sequential multipoint fuel injection.

Capacity: 3397 cc

Engine output: Approx 370 kW (503 bhp) at 10300 rpm

Max torque: Approx 370 Nm (273 lb-ft) at 7500 rpm

Output per litre: Approx 109 kW (148 bhp)

Fuel grade: Premium plus (motorsport specification)

Electrical system:
Motec display with data memory; 12 V, 26 Ah battery; 140 Ah alternator

Power transmission:
Engine and gearbox bolted together to form one drive unit; power conveyed by double drive shafts to the rear wheels. Manual sequential six-speed gearbox, in-line gearshift; gears shifted electropneumatically by way of paddles on the steering wheel; oil/water heat exchanger; ZF Sachs three-plate carbon-fibre racing clutch; mechanical limited-slip differential; anti-spin control.

Front axle: double wishbone track control arm configuration; ZF Sachs four-way gas-pressure dampers, pushrod operation; torsion springs; adjustable anti-roll bar in bending-leaf design; hydraulic power steering with mechanical pump.

Rear axle:
double wishbone track control arm configuration; ZF Sachs four-way gas-pressure dampers, pushrod operation; torsion springs; adjustable anti-roll bar. Overall suspension infinitely adjustable for height, camber, and track.

Two-circuit brake system with front/rear split and balance bar control; no ABS; six-piston aluminium monobloc fixed callipers at the front; cross-drilled, inner-vented carbon brake discs measuring 380 mm (14.96") in diameter at the front and 355 mm (13.98") at the rear.

Wheels and tires:
Single-piece light-alloy wheels with central bolts
front 12.5 x 18 on 29/65 18 Michelin slicks
rear 13 x 18 on 31/71 18 Michelin slicks

775 kg (1709 lb) to A.C.O. Regulations

Power-to-weight ratio:
2.1 kg/kW (1.5 kg/bhp)

Length 4650 mm (183.1")
Width 2000 mm (78.7")
Height 1068 mm (42.0")

Tank capacity:
90-litre (19.8 Imp gal) safety tank with rapid tank filling

-credit: porsche

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