The Acura ARX-06 endurance race car debuts on 19 August at The Quail, A Motorsports Gathering, during Monterey Car Week. The machine then makes a competition premiere in January at the Rolex 24 at Daytona and is challenging the 2023 IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar GTP Championship.
Power for the race car comes from the new Acura AR24e 2.4-litre, twin-turbocharged V6. It makes the maximum 671 bhp (500 kilowatts) that the rules mandate and revs to 10,000 rpm. The design of the combustion chamber lets the powerplant run on low-carbon fuel.
Gallery: Acura ARX-06 Race Car Reveal
The series rules mandate the use of a Bosch Motor Generator Unit and Williams Advanced Engineering battery pack. The Acura crew had to create the software for making sure its combustion engine could work with this hybrid portion of the powertrain.
The ARX-06's styling includes a massive front splitter and a floating element above it that also holds the running light portion of the headlights. The rear includes a fin that spans the area from the cockpit to the wing, which has endplates that attach to the lower bodywork.
Part of the development included rendering the cockpit in VR and putting the future drivers into the car. They suggested lowering the side mirrors to a spot directly behind the front fenders. This gave them better outward visibility and turned out to be a more aerodynamically efficient position for the vehicle.
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The rules of this class require manufacturers to select one of four approved chassis, but the builders can then apply bodywork that fits with the look of their brand. The ARX-06 uses carbon-fibre monocoque underpinnings from ORECA. The company previously worked with Acura on the ARX-05 DPi.
"We are looking forward to the challenge of racing Porsche, BMW, and GM in IMSA’s pinnacle GTP championship. We are very cognisant this is a big step for us. We have a lot to learn, but that is why race," said David Salters, Honda Performance Development president and technical director.
Wayne Taylor Racing and Meyer Shank Racing will compete using the ARX-06 in 2023. These teams already campaign the ARX-05 in the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship. As of this writing, the drivers for these teams hold the top four spots in the series' points standings.