Peugeot considers return to Le Mans 0

Peugeot-considers-return-to-Le-MansPeugeot has announced its intentions to return to the top tier of prototype racing at Le Mans, but only if organisers of the race substantially reduce the cost of competing.

The French manufacturer withdrew from the LMP1 class of the World Endurance Championship back in 2012, when its road car division was posting significant losses. Up until then, Peugeot had participated in the Championship for five years, winning the overall title in 2009 plus the Le Mans Cup in 2010 and 2011.

At the recent Geneva Motor Show, Peugeot chief Jean-Phillipe Imparato, said that the manufacturer was contemplating returning to Le Mans, if costs were lowered.

“We have always said we will return if three conditions are met: firstly, we as a company are making money; secondly, we have won the Dakar Rally and thirdly, the cost of competition cannot be over €200m per year,” said Imparato. “The first two conditions are now met, the third is not. We are studying a return, but the regulations must be easier on the budget.”

Audi pulled out of the championship at the close of the 2016 season. This leaves only Porsche and Toyota as the sole manufacturer teams in the LMP1 category. Race organisers are believed to view three ‘core‘ manufacturers as the minimum amount for the Championship to be sustainable, and are thereby pushing for rule changes to draw Peugeot in.

Possible changes could involve altering the aerodynamic rules; the use of expensive hybrid powertrain systems is seen as vital to making the cars relevant to road car developments.

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