FIA World Endurance Championship 2017 Team presentations - 31.03.2017 Autodromo Nazionale Monza - Italy

With the release of new cars, albeit evolutions of previous models, there always comes improvements and new innovations. 2017 is no different, it would appear the LED ‘Laser’ Lights of the Audi R18 era has now been surpassed by both Porsche and Toyota.

SportsCarGlobal has had EXCLUSIVE! access to development engineers and can now reveal that we are entering a new age of regenerative power. Much has been said about the frankly conservatory-like new lights on both cars, and we have dug deep to uncover the facts.  They work like a regular headlight at night, but during the day are actually capturing and concentrating pure sunlight for later night use.

“The concept came to us in the solarium” said Development Director Dieter FourGatsu “given Le Mans is so close to the summer solstice we should make more use of the daylight hours. We passed the idea to the University boffins and they rapidly turned it into reality. Given the benefits for the whole industry we shared the development costs, saving money, with our competitors, and that is why you see these enormous glasshouses on the factory cars.”

Of course for the privileged drivers it fundamentally changes the race at Le Mans, no longer will it be a day/night race, more a day/captured daylight race.

Drivers in other categories are less impressed with the development, “Well thankfully there are only four (five at Le Mans) of the factory LMP1s this year” said Frank Foolstadt of the new GTE-Am Team, “We tested with them at Aragon, and it is like having the sunrise behind you multiple times a lap!”

The Organisers are also known to be concerned on health and safety grounds for the other competitors. Gerard Butyoufool of the technical delegation made it clear that steps were already being taken to address the issue, “We appreciate the collaboration the manufacturers have taken in developing this technology and minimise costs. We do not want to stifle their creativity or how you say in English, ‘joie de vie’. But we must consider the implications and challenges for the other drivers and spectators alike. Hence we are announcing a new mandated system, SightGuard, developed for the protection of the drivers and available on sale at Le Mans for spectators who wish to view the capture daylight racing!”

 

In Operation in the lab during Development trials                          Photo Credit:Die komplettierte 3M(TM) Speedglas(TM)

Further investigation has led SportsCarGlobal to uncover further images of the type of protection Gerard has in the works.  Development work is clearly being carried out by National Treasure ‘Our Nige’.

Nigel Mansell, testing SightGuard in Off mode

Finally we commissioned Andy MoreBlack to provide an impression of what the SightGuard helmet could look like once liveried up.  We must say its does look fantastic and certainly does Make America look Great Again!

 

Don’t be fooled, enjoy the Prologue!