Porsche Completes WEC Test With 919 Hybrid
The Porsche Team has wrapped an eight day test in Abu Dhabi with its 2016 919 Hybrid car, it comes ahead of the World Endurance Championship season opener in April at Silverstone.
Porsche’s second WEC test of the year focused on tyre trials with rubber partner Michelin, but also involved testing new components on the 919 Hybrid for the coming season. The Formula One circuit in the United Arab Emirates is an ideal proving ground at this time of year thanks to its consistently dry and warm climate, together with the circuit’s broad mix of fast and slow corners, part of its 5.554 kilometre long lap. Porsche tested new aerodynamic parts, and put its latest hybrid powertrain developments under the microscope too.
Driving duties were split over the course of the eight day test, Romain Dumas, Neel Jani and Marc Lieb completed 2,059 kilometres over three days before handing over to their team mates, Timo Bernhard, Brendon Hartley and Mark Webber. Porsche’s 2015 Driver’s Champions, Bernhard, Hartley and Webber, then ran for five days covering 4,142 kilometres in total.
Michelin brought various different types of tyre to the UAE. For the 2016 WEC series it offers three different slick tyres; soft cold, soft hot and soft hot plus, each with three to four varying compounds. The tyres have been developed to cater for a range of track temperatures from cool, such as those experienced in Europe, to very hot which the cars will also encounter throughout their global travels during the season. The Abu Dhabi test allowed Porsche to discover which of the constructions on offer would best suit the 919, choosing one for the upcoming season, although it remains tight lipped about precisely which variant that might have been.
Andreas Seidl, Team Principal, said: “We are very pleased with this test. It is a demanding and important task to make the right choices out of the variety of tyres, as we will spend the season on them. During such comparisons changes to the car are very limited because they would falsify the results. You have to strictly separate tyre testing from the car’s development. In the end, of course, both have to be brought together and work well as a package.”
The Porsche Team’s next endurance test will be back in Europe between now and April. The WEC season kicks off on 17th April at Silverstone, visit www.fiawec.com for more.