2018 will see new regulations come in to force in the FIA’s World Endurance Championship’s top-flight, following the high-profile withdrawal of first Audi, then Porsche from the LMP1 category.
Ahead of the new season, the UK’s Gibson Technology has announced that is has signed a contract with DragonSpeed to supply LMP1 engines for the 2018/19 season, following the French team’s ELMS LMP2 Championship winning season. The move to LMP1 for the team will see it running a single BR1 chassis, paired to a ‘GL458’ engine.
The new LMP1 engine supplied by Gibson will be based upon its successful LMP2 engine. Design, development and production of the new GL458 are taking place at its Repton, UK, facility, with the first engine being scheduled for delivery to DragonSpeed in late February. All LMP2 WEC, ELMS and Le Mans 24 Hour teams are currently powered by Gibson engines, with over 500,000kms covered so far with the GK428 engines.
“I am delighted to forge this alliance with Gibson Technology,” said Elton Julian, DragonSpeed team owner. “Having personally raced with their engines in the past and now winning our first LMP championship as a team owner with their power plant, I can’t think of a better partner for DragonSpeed’s next challenge. Reliability, support and the common desire to succeed make this the obvious choice for our programme.”
“Everyone at Gibson is thrilled that one of our most successful LMP2 engine customers has opted to remain with us to continue with this excellent partnership and we look forward to tackling the challenge of LMP1 together,” said John Manchester, Gibson Technology’s operations director. “Work has been underway for a while on the new LMP1 power unit and we will aim to ensure that we can deliver the required combination of power, fuel efficiency and good reliability from the moment the DragonSpeed Dallara Gibson goes on track.”