Acura TLX GT racecar to make motorsports debut at Detroit Grand PrixMon, 31 Mar 2014 08:43:00 EST
Acura debuted its TLX GT racecar at the 2014 Detroit Auto Show earlier this year, and it looks like the racer is set to get its first competitive outing in Motown as well. The RealTime Racing team is competing with a single car driven by Peter Cunningham for the Pirelli World Challenge rounds during the Detroit Grand Prix from May 30 through June 1.
Honda Performance Development is developing the TLX GT with a direct-injected, twin-turbocharged V6 engine, based on the production, naturally aspirated version, and all-wheel drive helps maintain traction. A second car is being added to the effort later.
The turbocharged Acura sedan will face competition in the series from vehicles like the Audi R8 LMS, Cadillac CTS-V, Dodge Viper, Nissan GT-R, Porsche 911 and more. With the Detroit Grand Prix hosting the sixth and seventh races in the Pirelli World Challenge GT class schedule, it doesn't seem that Acura is expecting to win the series in its debut season, but it will surely gain valuable experience.
Acura chose a very experienced team to debut its car. RealTime Racing has been competing in the World Challenge series since 1993 with Honda and Acura racecars. With 14 manufacturers' championships and 14 drivers' championships in that time, it has definitely shown the ability to win. Scroll down to get the full scoop on the team's plans.
Acura TLX GT Race Car To Debut At Detroit Grand Prix
03/25/2014 - TORRANCE, Calif.
Racing application for new 2015 Acura TLX
Will run in highly competitive GT category
Single-car entry for RealTime Racing and driver Peter Cunningham
Acura Motorsports today announced that the new 2015 Acura TLX GT will make its Pirelli World Challenge competition debut at the May 30-June 1 Detroit Belle Isle Grand Prix double-header race weekend.
To be campaigned by long time Acura Motorsports partner RealTime Racing, the new TLX GT will move Acura into the top category of the Pirelli World Challenge, facing competition that includes the Audi R8 LMS, Cadillac CTS-V, Chevrolet Corvette, Dodge Viper, Lamborghini Gallardo, Mercedes SLS, Nissan GTR, Porsche 911 and Ferrari 458.
"The competition in the 2014 Pirelli World Challenge is incredible, but Acura has never shied away from strong competition, in the marketplace or on the race track," said Art St. Cyr, President of Honda Performance Development and Vice President, Product Planning and Logistics, American Honda. "The 2015 Acura TLX is a true luxury sport sedan, so it is fitting that the car be raced against several of its natural competitors, and even some up-market brands, in the Pirelli World Challenge."
Developed from the production Acura TLX by HPD, the racing arm of American Honda Motor Co., Inc., the Acura TLX GT Race Car will feature HPD chassis and aerodynamic performance parts approved for Pirelli World Challenge competition, and will be powered by a direct-injected, twin-turbocharged V6 engine, developed by HPD from the normally aspirated, production TLX luxury sport sedan. It will utilize all-wheel drive, as found in Acura's SH-AWD system.
RealTime Racing, the most successful team in Pirelli World Challenge history, will initially field a single Acura TLX GT for owner/driver Peter Cunningham, with a second car to be added at a later date.
RTR has raced and won with both Honda and Acura products for more than two decades. Since entering the Sports Car Club of America Pro Racing-sanctioned World Challenge series in 1993, RTR has scored a record 85 race victories on its way to 14 Manufacturers' Championships and 14 Drivers' Championships.
"In our 27 years of racing Hondas and Acuras, we have developed a clear understanding of what it takes to win races and championships," RTR team principal Cunningham said. "In 2014, the Pirelli World Challenge GT class looks to be more competitive and diverse than at any time in the history of the series, and we look forward to the challenges that lie ahead. We will be working hard to develop the new TLX GT into a winning package. That's what we love to do."
About Honda Performance Development
HPD was founded in 1993 as the performance arm of American Honda, to spearhead the company's entry into Indy car racing. No other manufacturer has matched Honda's success in Indy cars, which includes 204 race victories, 15 drivers' championships, six manufacturers' championships and nine consecutive Indianapolis 500 victories (2004-2012). In 2013, Honda powered veteran Scott Dixon to four race wins and the 2013 IZOD IndyCar Series championship; and Tristan Vautier to series Rookie of the Year honors.
HPD's prototype racing efforts have resulted in more than 60 victories and multiple American Le Mans Series championships. The company's sports-car racing debut in 2007 at the 12 Hours of Sebring marked the first win for HPD's LM-V8 engine and the first for a Honda racing engine designed and developed outside of Japan. HPD won the LMP2 title in the inaugural 2012 World Endurance Championship and has twice won the LMP2 category at the 24 Hours of Le Mans since 2010. In 2013, HPD and Honda again swept the LMP1 and LMP2 manufacturers', engine, team and drivers' championships in the American Le Mans Series; while HPD-equipped Strakka Racing claimed the LMP1 class win at the 24 Hours of Le Mans for private team entries.
HPD participates in competition on both two wheels and four. The company offers a complete line of race engines for cars from grass roots to pinnacle; for professional, amateur and entry-level racers. For more information about HPD and the company's racing and Street Performance product lines, please visit http://hpd.honda.com.
By Chris Bruce
See also: Honda marks 20 million vehicles made in the USA, 2015 Acura TLX confirmed for New York debut, Toyota tops Consumer Reports best, worst used car values.