CHAMPCAR/CART: 2007 chassis and engine package announced

CHAMP CAR WORLD SERIES ANNOUNCES NEW CHASSIS AND ENGINE PACKAGE INDIANAPOLIS (October 11, 2005) - Innovation has always been a hallmark of the Bridgestone Presents the Champ Car World Series Powered by Ford. From the front-engine roadster to...

CHAMP CAR WORLD SERIES ANNOUNCES NEW CHASSIS AND ENGINE PACKAGE

INDIANAPOLIS (October 11, 2005) - Innovation has always been a hallmark of the Bridgestone Presents the Champ Car World Series Powered by Ford. From the front-engine roadster to today's sleek turbocharged machines, Champ Cars have always tested the mettle of the world's greatest drivers. Today, Champ Car announces its latest evolution in chassis design as the new Panoz DP01 Built by Elan Motorsports Technologies will be paired with a turbo-charged Ford-Cosworth engine on every Champ Car beginning with the 2007 season.

The new chassis and engine combination reflects the ongoing commitment by the Champ Car World Series, its owners, management and manufacturers to the long-term health and success of the series. The combination ensures a level playing field for every team and driver in the Champ Car World Series, while providing a stable technology and rules package for the future of Champ Car.

"We are extremely excited about the potential that the Panoz DP01 chassis built by Elan Motorsports Technologies and the Ford-Cosworth engine bring to the Champ Car World Series," said Champ Car President Steve Johnson. "This combination benefits Champ Car not only by providing a strong package for our current teams, but also by giving prospective teams an opportunity to be competitive right away. This package is just another indication of the progress the series has made since Kevin Kalkhoven, Jerry Forsythe and Paul Gentilozzi purchased it in 2004."

The new Panoz DP01 takes much of its look from the current Champ Car chassis, keeping alive the style that has made the series a favorite of racing fans around the globe. But the cutting-edge technology designed into the package incorporates many new aerodynamic features that make this car better suited to the urban race tracks which host Champ Car's highly successful three-day festivals of speed. The design will also lead to more competitive racing on the permanent road courses and ovals that mark the Champ Car World Series as the most diverse racing series in the world. The Panoz DP01 is smaller than the current Champ Car in both length and width and weighs 165 pounds less than the current machine, providing a more nimble and quicker machine that will put driver skills at a premium.

The aerodynamic changes on the new chassis will allow for more passing via smaller wings and bigger tunnels which will create less turbulence for cars in traffic. Another advantage is the addition of an on-board starter which will allow for less yellow-flag time during events. The new design also features safety innovations that include upgrades to the head surround and seat back areas as well as increased leg padding. The design also incorporates a collapsible steering column, new side intrusion panels and a two-stage nose crush and a rear crash structure for oval events.

"We are extremely enthusiastic and proud to be selected as the exclusive builder of the next generation Champ Car," said David Bowes, CEO Elan Motorsports Technologies. "At the outset of the process, Champ Car sought RFPs from seven manufacturers. After an exhaustive analysis, Champ Car has recognized not only the technical capabilities but also the unprecedented service, quality and accessibility that can only be offered by the leading North American based organization. We are looking forward to working with Champ Car officials to build a state of the art race car of which everyone will be proud."

Paired with the Panoz DP01 Built by Elan Motorsports Technologies will be the next generation of the fabled turbocharged Ford-Cosworth V8 engine. The 2.65-liter powerplant will feature the proven reliability of the engines which are currently built to perform in race conditions for 1,200 miles and will maintain the unique high-pitched engine note that sets Champ Cars apart.

"We are looking forward to continuing our partnership with the Champ Car World Series and are excited with the possibilities that this new package presents," said Cosworth Vice President Ian Bisco. "We have had great success with the XFE engine over the last three seasons, building a strong powerplant that has shown equality in performance and tremendous reliability, and we expect to have even greater successes with Champ Car in the years to come."

The 2007 package is also designed to reduce operating costs for both present and future Champ Car teams. A new rolling chassis will cost approximately 35 percent less than the current car while the costs of spare parts are expected to yield a savings to teams of nearly 50 percent. The design also allows Champ Car to explore new technologies such as carbon brakes which will allow for even more cost savings over the life of the car.

"The reduction in cost of the Panoz DP01 and Cosworth engine will benefit Champ Car's teams immensely," said Tony Cotman, Champ Car vice president of operations. "The design and cost will keep our current teams in the series but will also attract new teams to the series. Combined with the reduced cost, the new design also makes the Champ Car World Series even more of a driver's series. The lighter, smaller car means teams will rely even more on the drivers to achieve maximum performance."

The Champ Car World Series features some of the greatest race car drivers in the world competing in the most diverse and exciting series in the world. Champions Sebastien Bourdais, Jimmy Vasser, Cristiano da Matta and Canadian Paul Tracy along with 2004 Roshfrans Rookie of the Year A. J. Allmendinger, Oriol Servia and Alex Tagliani are among the drivers who battle for the Vanderbilt Cup, which is awarded to the winner of the Bridgestone Presents the Champ Car World Series Powered by Ford. The title is contested on oval circuits, temporary street circuits and permanent road courses.

-ccws-

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Series IndyCar
Drivers Jimmy Vasser , Alex Tagliani , Paul Tracy , Oriol Servia , Paul Gentilozzi , Sébastien Bourdais , Steve Johnson , Kevin Kalkhoven , Cristiano da Matta