Lamborghini Squadra Corse is developing its first LMDh prototype. The car will make its debut in 2024 and will compete in both the FIA World Endurance Championship’s Hypercar class and IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship’s GTP class
Since 2015, Lamborghini has been active in GT racing, competing in various series for GT3-specification cars as well as running its Lamborghini Super Trofeo one-make series around the world.
Over the course of the last seven years, the brand has accumulated more than 40 titles and several unique achievements, such as a hat-trick of GT Daytona class victories in the 24 Hours at Daytona between 2018 and 2020, something no other manufacturer has ever accomplished before.
With the step into the top level of sports car racing, the Italian manufacturer will be in a position to challenge for overall victories in the world’s most prestigious endurance races; the 24 Hours of Le Mans, 24 Hours at Daytona and 12 Hours of Sebring.
LMDh stands for Le Mans Daytona hybrid and gives the name to the new sports prototype category, eligible for the top classes of both the FIA World Endurance Championship and the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship.
As approved by the FIA World Motor Sport Council this March, in order to ensure the seamless introduction of cars built to LMDh technical regulations in 2023, the cars will be allowed in the Hypercar class of this year’s FIA World Endurance Championship on a race-by-race basis, meaning they won’t be eligible to score points in 2022.
For Lamborghini, the LMDh program will run in addition to its Squadra Corse’s customer racing operation, consisting of Super Trofeo and GT3 projects.
Stephan Winkelmann, Lamborghini Chairman and CEO, said: “This step up into the highest echelon of sports car racing marks an important milestone for our company,” stated “We will be measuring ourselves against the very best, on the most demanding proving grounds. On one hand, this will give our successful motorsports program even more visibility, but it will also allow us to test future technologies: our LMDh prototypes will become our most sophisticated open laboratory on four wheels.”
Giorgio Sanna, Lamborghini Head of Motorsport, said: “I am absolutely delighted that Lamborghini will be taking the next step in our motorsport journey, the step into LMDh and the top level of sports car racing. LMDh will play a special role in Lamborghini’s Motorsports strategy, giving us the unique opportunity to expand our customer racing activities to new platforms and enforce our long-term partnership with customer teams and drivers.”
Pierre Fillon, President of the Automobile Club de l’Ouest, said: “To be joined by such a prestigious make as Lamborghini is fantastic for endurance racing. Hypercar, the discipline's new top tier, has attracted carmakers from across the globe. We are soon to celebrate the centenary of the 24 Hours of Le Mans, and another golden age of endurance is just beginning. I for one am ready to enjoy it to the fullest.”
Richard Mille, FIA Endurance Commission President, said: “Having yet another renowned sportscar manufacturer joining the Hypercar ranks is great news and something everyone involved has been working towards. Owing to the convergence, the cars will compete on both sides of the Atlantic and thus the sport of endurance racing will thrive globally. I can’t wait to see Lamborghini’s challenger going against some other iconic brands active in the FIA World Endurance Championship as well as the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship.”
John Doonan, IMSA President, said: “IMSA has enjoyed a longstanding partnership with Lamborghini dating back to the introduction of Lamborghini Super Trofeo North America a decade ago and continuing into a successful GTD program. We are proud that Lamborghini is confirming plans to grow its IMSA footprint even further in 2024 into GTP and the top category of prototype sports car racing. Having another manufacturer of this caliber make the commitment to race in GTP reinforces the LMDh technical platform that we developed alongside our partners at the ACO, and we cannot wait to see these new Lamborghini prototypes debut in the 2024 IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship.”
Frédéric Lequien, FIA WEC CEO, said: “We are honoured that Lamborghini will join the Hypercar class of FIA WEC from 2024. Lamborghini is an iconic brand but it has never competed in the premier class of endurance racing before. They will join the FIA WEC at a very exciting time in its history. For the 2024 season there will be an exceptional line-up of marques competing in our premier class. The competition will be fierce but we have no doubt that Lamborghini will be in the thick of the fight. Lamborghini has been highly successful in other classes of endurance racing so we cannot wait to see them compete for overall victories at our iconic events.”