Ferrari's Le Mans Hypercar programme is gathering some serious steam
Long-term collaborators AF Corse will be assisting in developing the new LMH-class endurance racer
Whilst the launch year of 2023 is still a fair way away, Ferrari's Le Mans Hypercar (LMH) programme is already gathering some serious steam! The legendary Italian manufacturer has very recently announced that it'll be partnering up with long-term collaborators AF Corse to help develop its LMH entry, competing in the World Endurance Championship (WEC) under the banner of "Ferrari-AF Corse".
The partnership between Ferrari and AF Corse has been a very successful one over the years. The collaboration has been on a winning streak ever since the 2006 FIA GT season when the F430 GT2 managed to get the team, drivers' and constructors' titles in its first year of active competition. AF Corse has also managed to gain 6 team and drivers' titles in the LMGTE Pro and LMGTE Am classes in the WEC since its establishment in 2012, as well as 5 constructors' titles for Ferrari and 3 class wins at the 24 Hours of Le Mans.
"Today’s announcement is an important step towards the debut of our LMH in the World Endurance Championship," said Antonello Coletta, Head of Ferrari Attività Sportive GT. "We are happy to have a reliable partner like AF Corse with us for this project. Ferrari and AF Corse have enjoyed a solid relationship for a long time, as you can see in the FIA WEC, where we run our official 488 GTEs together with the Piacenza-based team. We look forward to continuing together on a journey as rewarding as the years of racing cooperation to date".
"We are proud of this announcement. It is the crowning of a dream and recognition of the great effort made over the years," said Amato Ferrari, team owner of AF Corse. "Our partnership with Ferrari is a winning one that began in 2006, and I am delighted to continue it in the LMH project. We have immediately kicked off with great enthusiasm aiming to raise the bar even further and to be ready for this new challenge".
Ferrari hasn't yet revealed any details about its LMH car. That hasn't stopped people from speculating though! With the awesome all-wheel-drive full hybrid SF90 Stradale already very much hitting the streets and Ferrari already developing another hypercar model for 2022 that'll have a very different focus to the SF90, it wouldn't be unreasonable to suggest that either one of those two cars could form the basis of Ferrari's 2023 challenger. Perhaps the 2022 hypercar is the more likely one, as it'll reportedly have a more hardcore track-ready focus similar to cars like the Aston Martin Valkyrie.
Will the collaboration between Ferrari and AF Corse continue to be more successful as Ferrari aims for the top class of the WEC? It'll remain to be seen whether it can topple the mighty form of Toyota when the new hypercar takes to the track in 2023. The partnership does have a fantastic track record though and, hopefully for Ferrari and AF Corse, they'll be able to get some great results once the time comes.