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Nissan to Rethink GT-R LM Nismo Race Car

Weak start for FF prototype racer prompts higher-ups to discuss the future of the LMP1 program

Alex Nishimoto
Jul 20, 2015

Nissan's radical GT-R LM Nismo Le Mans racers didn't do as well at their inaugural race as the company had hoped. Just one of the LMP1-class cars finished the race at this year's 24 Hours of Le Mans, but it finished so far off the pace that it wasn't classified. Such dismal performance out the gate has prompted higher-ups at Nissan to discuss the future of the LMP1 program, according to a report from Sportscar365.

Nissan GT R LM Nismo Prototype Racecar front end Photo 2/9   |   Nissan GT R LM Nismo Prototype Racecar

Citing "multiple industry sources," Sportscar365 says that the a series of executive meetings this week will address Nissan's LMP1 program, possibly even deciding the GT-R LM Nismo's fate. The program was originally allotted two years for competition, but executives may decide to cut that short. During the 24-hour race last month, the three front-engine, front-drive hybrid prototypes were plagued with pace and reliability issues. The hybrid systems suffered major problems, so all three cars ran without electric motor assistance. Though the #22 car ultimately saw the checkered flag, it spent one-third of the race in the garage and finished more than 150 laps down from the winning Porsche 919.

Nissan president and CEO Carlos Ghosn first mentioned that the program was being reconsidered last month at a press conference for a Formula E race in London.

"Nissan has always been associated with innovation," Ghosn said. "We made an attempt that did not prove fruitful. We must reassess the strategy…We wanted to be different and competitive but we've only been different."

Nissan gt r lm nismo profile Photo 6/9   |   Nissan GT R LM Nismo race car

The U.S.-based operation will conduct a test with the GT-R LM Nismo racers at The Circuit of the Americas on July 27-28, where they're expected to test new bodywork, suspension, and brakes. The meetings will take place sometime this week in Japan.

Source: Sportscar365

By Alex Nishimoto
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