IndyCar has postponed its plan to debut new hybrid power units which were initially set for introduction in the first of the 2024 season.
The IndyCar Championship series had originally announced that the 2022 season would see the introduction of hybrid power units. However the plan was postponed until 2024 after being postponed twice later in the year.
August saw the start of the hybrid units’ testing at Sebring. However, IndyCar confirmed in a statement on Thursday that the hybrids won’t be applied until the conclusion of Indianapolis 500, which is scheduled for the final weekend of May and is the sixth round of the 17-race calendar for 2024.
The weekend following the Indianapolis 500, IndyCar is scheduled to race in Detroit and this will probably prove to be too short a window of opportunity to swap power units.
Two weeks from then, the series will travel to Road America and two weeks will also go by before the next two races, which will be held at the Mid-Ohio road course and the Toronto street track.
IndyCar chief Jay Frye highlighted that the series is fully dedicated to a successful hybrid power unit introduction for the upcoming season.
The hybrid engines have undergone roughly 25,000 kilometers of testing at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway’s road and oval courses, Milwaukee Mile, Gateway, Road America as well as Barber Motorsports Park.
The series claimed that considering some parts of its specification chassis have been made lighter to make room for the hybrid power units, it anticipates setting new track records in the first races of the 2024 season.
Unlike the current push-to-pass system, drivers will have unlimited use of the power boost available once the hybrid unit is introduced.
Up until the beginning of 2024, more tests of the hybrid power units are scheduled to take place. IndyCar promises to confirm the exact date of the engines’ introduction at a later date. The IndyCar power unit specification will change for the first time since 2012 when the new hybrid engines eventually make their appearance.