Peugeot confident of racing 9X8 Hypercar without rear wing

Peugeot is confident that its new 9X8 Le Mans Hypercar will race without a rear wing when its makes its debut in the FIA World Endurance Championship next year.

Peugeot confident of racing 9X8 Hypercar without rear wing

The French manufacturer believes that there is only a "small possibility" that it will have to revise the radical aerodynamics shown on a mock-up at the virtual launch of its new WEC challenger last week.

Olivier Jansonnie, technical director of the WEC programme at Peugeot Sport, said on the first public viewing of the 9X8 showcar at this weekend's Monza WEC round: "We are 100 per cent confident that the car will start testing without the rear wing.

"You have to correlate what you do in calculation - in computational fluid dynamics (CFD) and in the windtunnel - and what you do on the track.

"This is the final piece of the puzzle that is missing, but hopefully our simulations are right and we will go racing like this.

"There is a small possibility that something doesn't work, this can always happen, but we are sufficiently confident that this is going to be the concept we race."

Jansonnie stressed, however, that Peugeot would change tack if necessary.

"If at any point we find that it is not the right direction, we are sufficiently experienced to change our mind and revise our opinion," he explained.

"We have sufficient humility to understand that you need to test to prove that the new ideas are correct."

Detail Peugeot Hypercar 9X8

Detail Peugeot Hypercar 9X8

Photo by: Francesco Corghi

Peugeot has been able exploit regulations that lay down performance windows for LMH machinery, which include maximum downforce and minimum drag figures, as well as allowing much greater freedom in terms of the underbody than in the outgoing LMP1 category.

"Reading the regulations and trying to analyse their potential we found that we could achieve the correct levels of downforce and drag without a rear wing," explains Jansonnie.

"We started talking to our designers [stylists] and they said it was very interesting and we started to move in this direction."

Jansonnie revealed that the first 9X8 monocoque is already in build at an undisclosed external supplier and that Peugeot Sport will receive it "in the next two months".

The car's 2.6-litre twin-turbo has been running on the bench since April and is due to be mated to the front-axle hybrid system on the dyno in October or November.

Peugeot remains on target to start testing the 9X8 before the end of this year, Jansonnie insisted. A decision on when the car will begin racing over the course of the 2022 WEC will be made after initial testing.

Asked specifically if the 9X8 would race at the Le Mans 24 Hours next June, Jean-Marc Finot, motorsport boss of Peugeot parent company Stellantis, said at Monza: "If we are ready we will, if we are not ready we won't."

Watch this Sunday's WEC race at Monza live on Motorsport.tv.

shares
comments

Related video

Monza WEC: Toyota fastest in opening practice

Previous article

Monza WEC: Toyota fastest in opening practice

Next article

Monza WEC: Alpine, Glickenhaus split Toyotas in FP2

Monza WEC: Alpine, Glickenhaus split Toyotas in FP2
Load comments
The understated Le Mans legend who has earned a testimonial Prime

The understated Le Mans legend who has earned a testimonial

OPINION: After 24 Le Mans 24 Hours participations, 50-year-old Emmanuel Collard will be absent from the grid this year, stuck at the mercy of his gold driver grading. But, while he's not motivated by breaking start records, the French veteran is determined to return to the field next year.

WEC
Jul 24, 2021
How glitches threatened Toyota's unbeaten WEC streak Prime

How glitches threatened Toyota's unbeaten WEC streak

The FIA World Endurance Championship's long-awaited return to Monza posed the sternest test yet for Toyota's new hypercar. Although the Japanese marque's GR010 Hybrid remains unbeaten, the victory for Mike Conway, Jose Maria Lopez and Kamui Kobayashi was far from plain sailing.

WEC
Jul 19, 2021
The significance of the next step in WEC/IMSA convergence Prime

The significance of the next step in WEC/IMSA convergence

Following the latest convergence connection permitting Le Mans Hypercars from the FIA World Endurance Championship to compete against LMDh entries in the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship from 2023, it could open up enticing options not only to manufacturers but also for the calendar and race formats

WEC
Jul 13, 2021
How overlooked Mazda produced one of Le Mans' greatest shocks Prime

How overlooked Mazda produced one of Le Mans' greatest shocks

The screaming rotary-engined Mazda 787 is regarded as one of the most popular Le Mans 24 Hours-winning cars, but until its surprise success on this day 30 years ago it was never regarded as a likely victor. But that reckoned without a new technical partner, some canny political manoeuvring and a rival's bizarre self-inflicted weakness.

Le Mans
Jun 23, 2021
How Alpine's stunted Portimao charge kept Toyota clear Prime

How Alpine's stunted Portimao charge kept Toyota clear

Despite going stride for stride for pace at Portimao, Alpine’s grandfathered LMP1 couldn’t convert pole position into a sustained victory fight against Toyota. And due to rules and car limitations that are set in stone, the French manufacturer will be searching for solutions in its own battle of endurance.

WEC
Jun 14, 2021
Charting 100 world championship sportscar starts for Toyota Prime

Charting 100 world championship sportscar starts for Toyota

This weekend's Portimao 8 Hours round of the FIA World Endurance Championship marks the 100th world champion prototype start for Toyota. Here are the major milestones on the road to three figures since the earliest low-key days of its entry into the Group C arena nearly 40 years ago.

WEC
Jun 12, 2021
The philosophical problems the WEC's new Hypercar class is already facing Prime

The philosophical problems the WEC's new Hypercar class is already facing

Most of the column inches after the World Endurance Championship's opener were centred around the relative pace of the Hypercar class and the LMP2s, but there's another question that needs addressing in order for the new division to have a successful future

WEC
May 7, 2021
How stumbling Toyota drew first blood in the WEC's new era Prime

How stumbling Toyota drew first blood in the WEC's new era

Amid concerns that the new Hypercar class would be upstaged on debut by the spec LMP2 machines at Spa, Toyota delivered the pole and victory that the vast majority of observers expected. But neither car had a clean run, which gave the grandfathered Alpine LMP1 an unexpected shot at glory.

WEC
May 4, 2021