That Didn't Take Long as IMSA Scraps LMDh Name for New Prototype Class

·2 min read
Photo credit: Porsche Motorsport
Photo credit: Porsche Motorsport

Taking a page from the past, and getting rid of a tepid name in one shot, IMSA is re-naming the Le Mans Daytona Hybrid, or LMDh, which will be the top Prototype car in 2023 in the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship as well as the World Endurance Championship.

The new car will be known as the IMSA GTP, used by IMSA from 1981 to 1993, IMSA GTP featured innovative prototypes from a variety of manufacturers. The original GTP, or Grand Touring Prototype era helped to develop what then were emerging technologies such as antilock braking and traction control.

WEC is calling the new class Hypercar.

While there will be a hybrid aspect to the new cars, it’s a mild hybrid system, and the new name removes an emphasis on hybridization.

Still IMSA says the new GTP class will place a renewed emphasis on fuel economy, sustainability and green initiatives, such as the single-specification hybrid powertrain system to be used by all LMDh cars along with other technologies relevant to participating manufacturers. The GTP moniker also is appropriate given that each car will carry significant design cues and styling to closely align with each manufacturer’s road-going products.

“If you were a race fan in the 1980s and early ‘90s as I was, you probably have fond memories of those epic IMSA GTP race cars, drivers and teams,” said IMSA president John Doonan. “We are on the precipice of an amazing new era of GTP competition, with a real opportunity to eclipse the previous success of GTP. There is so much for IMSA fans—and really endurance sports car racing fans around the world—to look forward to in the coming years, led by the introduction of the new GTP class here at Daytona in 2023.”