Porsche announced its commitment to developing an LMDh prototype for racing from January 2023. The prospect of fielding a vehicle in both the FIA World Endurance Championship (WEC) and the North American IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship proved to be the deciding factor for the Executive Board’s decision at Porsche AG. Less than five months later, Porsche divulged its close partnership with Team Penske. The new Porsche Penske Motorsport team for international racing was born. The squad operates out of two locations: The IMSA headquarters is in the American team’s home of Mooresville, North Carolina, with the WEC operations run from Mannheim, Germany. After the start of the active testing phase for the new prototypes in January 2022, the factory squad is about to celebrate its race debut in Daytona.
The new Porsche 963 makes its official race debut at the 24 Hours of Daytona in the US state of Florida (28/29 January). Prior to this, the hybrid vehicle had covered more than 33,000 kilometres at tests and the so-called Roar at Daytona. In the final qualifying session, the two works cars qualified on positions two (No. 7) and nine (No. 6). The type designation alone makes the path clear that the Stuttgart sports car manufacturer is pursuing with the Porsche 963: The new car for the top classes Hypercar (FIA WEC) and GTP (IMSA) puts out around 500 kW (680 PS) in race mode and is expected to continue the successful legacy of the Porsche 962.
The legendary model from the Group C era achieved something unprecedented in 1986 and 1987: in both seasons, the cars clinched overall victory at Le Mans, Sebring and Daytona. Porsche holds a record in all three races, with 18 wins at the American endurance classics and 19 overall victories at Le Mans. Hopes are high for victory number 20 on the occasion of the 100th anniversary of the French 24-hour race in June 2023. The new Porsche 963 is ready to tackle this season’s great classics.