Turbochargers are finding their way back into top-level formula racing and IndyCar will add Chevrolet as an engine supplier for the 2012 season.
Honda currently provides spec 3.5-liter V-8s to every IndyCar team but 2012 will open the door for other engine suppliers. The mandated powerplants for 2012 must be aluminum in nature, turbocharged, have no more than six cylinders, ignite E85 ethanol, and have a displacement of no more than 2.4 liters. The new displacement matches current Formula 1-spec V-8s, but that series is moving to sub-2.0-liter four-cylinders for 2013.
The new Chevrolet V-6 engine will be found at Team Penske, who had earned 31 wins with Bowtie power in the past. Chevy had stints as an engine supplier in Indy-style racing from 1986-1993 and 2002-2005, netting 104 total race victories, seven Indianapolis 500 wins, and six driver champions.
"Our vision is to design, build and sell the world's best vehicles -- and racing is one of the best ways to showcase what we can do," said Tom Stephens, GM vice chairman for Global Product Operations.
"Re-entering IndyCar racing will help us take our advanced engine technology to the upper bounds of what's possible. And it will also provide a dynamic training ground for engineers, who'll transfer the technologies we develop for racing to the products we sell to our customers."
Formal technical specifications and details will come to light at an unspecified date.
Source: General Motors