After a 50 year absence from top class sportscar racing, Ferrari is set to return as an official entry in the Le Mans Hypercar (LMH) category in 2023.
Ferrari issued a statement earlier today confirmed that it has started development on an LMH car, something that has been rumored since the FIA and ACO announced the LMH class in 2018.
Although Ferrari machinery has been present in the top class of endurance racing far more recently — the Ferrari 333SP from 1995 to 1997 — Scuderia Ferrari itself hasn’t campaigned a car since 1973. It’s been an ever-present in GT racing, picking up 24 world titles and 36 wins in its class at the 24 Hours of Le Mans. However its last overall title at Le Mans came at the hands of the North American Racing Team (NART) Ferrari 250LM in 1965, and Scuderia Ferrari itself last took victory in the 1964 event.
Ferrari’s entry into the LMH class increases the number of manufacturers to five. Toyota and Scuderia Cameron Glickenhaus will contest the category in 2021, with a planned vehicle from ByKolles curiously absent from the entry list. Peugeot is set to join for the 2022 season, before Ferrari’s entry the following year.
It’s not yet known what form the Ferrari hypercar will take, with proposed entries ranging from more road-oriented machines to LMP1s adapted for the regulations. However Ferrari has confirmed it has entered the design and simulation phases of development, with track testing to come in the future.
Ferrari President John Elkann commented:
“In over 70 years of racing, on tracks all over the world, we led our closed-wheel cars to victory by exploring cutting-edge technological solutions: innovations that arise from the track and make every road car produced in Maranello extraordinary. With the new Le Mans Hypercar programme, Ferrari once again asserts its sporting commitment and determination to be a protagonist in the major global motorsport events.”