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Mercedes C-Class DTM – Click above for high-res image gallery

While American racing fans remain enamored with stock car racing, road course-bound touring car series continue to draw big crowds overseas. In Europe there's the World Touring Car Championship. DTM is one of the most popular forms of motorsport in Germany. The Japanese have Super GT. But Down Under, V8 Supercars reign supreme.

The Australian touring car series has typically been the battleground for Ford Falcons and Holden Commodores, but the Aussie brands could get some company once again thanks to new regulations. Following a similar move by NASCAR, series organizers in Australia are preparing to institute a new Car of the Future program that could open the door for foreign automakers to take part. The formula calls for a spec chassis with independent rear suspension replacing the live rear axles on the current competitors, plus more advanced DOHC 24-valve engines to accompany (and eventually replace) the pushrod 16-valve units currently in place.

According to reports from the other side of the world, Mercedes-Benz could be the first to take advantage of the new regs, spurred into action by the increased sales of FPVs and HSVs among V8 Supercars fans Down Under. The German automaker's Australian unit has commissioned Brock Engineering – run by the legendary Peter Brock's son James – to build a sort of ring-taxi type of vehicle based on the C63 AMG in which Mick Doohan – a superbike champion whose record rivals that of Valentino Rossi – will chauffeur paying customers and VIPs on hot laps around the Philip Island circuit in Victoria. The stripped-out, track-prepped C63, according to sources, could form the basis for a Mercedes V8 Supercar, similar to the company's DTM racer.

Although Mercedes typically prevents its regional subsidiaries from competing in local motorsport disciplines, an exception could apparently be made for the popular Australian series, with factory support provided to privateer entires. Nissan and Hyundai are reportedly also considering entries in the championship. Tip of the hat to Scott for the tip!


  • Image Credit: Photo: Newspress
  • Image Credit: Photo: Newspress


[Source: CarPoint.com.au]


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 25 Comments
      • 5 Years Ago
      There is a reason V8 Supercars was created with only Falcons and Commodores allowed, other manufactures just diluted the reason that fans watched the races, which is the rivalry between Ford and Holden.
      Besides I would not want to be a Hyundai fan at Bathurst, it's bad enough being a Ford fan and being outnumbered 2 to 1 the only way we stay alive is by being significantly smarter than idiot Holden fans. :-P
        • 5 Years Ago
        Haha, are you one of those guys that gets into fist fights with the "Holden Guys." But seriously, people said the same about Toyota entering NASCAR in the US. It's all good. Just think about it, there'll be even more guys to pick fights with now.

        I think a Hyundai Genesis sedan racer would be pretty sweet.
      • 5 Years Ago
      What happened to the headlamps in the image with Mika? Either a badly excecuted retouch, stickers only or both?!
      • 5 Years Ago
      why not the LS2LS7? - The same can be said about V8 Supercars; they have very little in common with their road-going brethren. Different engines, sequential gearboxes, a few people here have mentioned that the cars/bodyshells are the same shape anyway, which they're not. A good part of the middle of these cars is cut out to conform with the regulations on chassis length (look at the rear doors on V8 Supercars; esp Commodores; they're a lot shorter than the road cars and are made of composites).

      And call me cynical, but as we all know the word is that the next Falcon will be based on the Taurus, which means it will go front-wheel-drive. I wouldn't mind betting that these changes are in anticipation of the Falcon going FWD (and with the current regs, that would make the V8s a one-make series)... If this was the case, then Nissan could possibly look at entering the Maxima.
        • 5 Years Ago
        They may be tuned engines but at least they have some relation to what oyu can buy on the street. Unlike some American race series I won't mention. When ford wanted to go V6 on their road car, they had to do it on their race car also, that's the way it should be.
      • 5 Years Ago
      24-valve? 3 a cylinder?
      • 5 Years Ago
      Lord Vader your car has arrived
      • 5 Years Ago
      Toyota have been desperate to break into this series since it's inception using a Camry/Aurion body. I know they even considered using the Lexus brand to ensure they had a rear wheel drive platform. Allowing silhouette style bodies would completely open the series to other manufacturers and sponsors, which it desperately needs.

      Hyundai would use it as a launch for the Genesis rear wheel drive platform, NIssan would look to field Maxima type model, Toyota of course and most likely Honda. BMW would be very keen as they had a great run in the days on the original M3 and where BMW goes, Audi and Mercedes will follow.

      It would be great after years of watching Holden Commodores and Ford Falcons battle it out for no reason.
        • 5 Years Ago
        what do you mean desperately need? the last time a brand won that wasn't holden or ford they got booed off the podium, most people think v8 supercars are silhouette enough without going along the nascar lines and forgoing all semblance of reality
        • 5 Years Ago
        @DieRobotDie:

        "BMW would be very keen as they had a great run in the days on the original M3 and where BMW goes, Audi and Mercedes will follow."

        I seriously doubt that since BMW have pulled out of F1 due to budget constraints. They are already in the BTCC and WTCC and I believe in GT2 with their M3 Racer so I doubt they would go into this if they don't have the budget. They aren't in the DTM where Audi and Mercedes now solely compete, so unless they're looking to pick up a lot of market share in Australia it is unlikely for them to create an entry car.

        And as it stands right now, Audi and Mercedes look as if they're deeper into racing than BMW is considering the various competitions they compete in officially. So I guess it's BMW doing the following.

        • 5 Years Ago
        That would suck. Please keep your Nascar out of V8 Supercar.
        • 5 Years Ago
        The race where the Nissan winner was booed off was at Bathurst, which is rather unique on the V8 Supercar calendar, but race winners in the past have driven Jaguars, Mini's, BMW's and other assorted cars. AVESCO are under pressure, with races outside of Australia and sponsors wanting more of a point of difference change is needed. The alternative is abandon the platform altogether and return to a formula similar to Group A from the 1990's based on production cars, but that means the current Ford/Holden show would end immediately when faced with more advanced cars from Europe and Asia.

        BMW have a strong racing tradition in Australia and it's tied to their brand... also leaving F1 has freed up money for smaller activities, an AUD5M budget for a years V8 racing equals barely half a day of an F1 event.
      • 5 Years Ago
      I wonder what Nissan and Hyundai would enter?

      Nissan has the GT-R but no real sedan equivalent. And Hyundai...???
        • 5 Years Ago
        For Nissan, a version of the Infiniti G-Series sedan homoligated especially for the Australian Market. For Hyundai, maybe a Genesis sedan?
        • 5 Years Ago
        Do what? DTM? Yes.
      • 5 Years Ago
      What, is something wrong with turning left all the time... (/sarcasm)
      • 5 Years Ago
      While I can see a point in keeping it pure (also makes it easier to keep parity) Holden/Ford, unfortunately as RWD sedans become less and less relevant (in the blue-collar market anyway) it's also putting a lot of pressure on AVESCO and the V8 Supercar series to future proof themselves. I'm sure their 'Car of the Future' program wasn't coughed up on a boring day in the office- there's a very good reason for it. They need other manufacturer's or the series will die eventually. We don't even know if the next Falcon is going to be RWD or not.

      So, for the sake of the series, I'm all for it as long as they don't allow aero kits that go as far as DTM. I'm not worried about the cars not being super close to their road going brethren as that's a thing of the past already.

      Actually I'm looking forward to IRS and OHC engines. We finally got sequential shifting approved a few years ago. H-pattern was held for so long because 'it kept it closer to the road cars'.
      • 5 Years Ago
      I can understand why Mercedes wants in. But this Car of the Future stuff sounds stupid. Why do they want Mercedes do come in and pull a DTM on it? Have you ever seen a DTM car? It's the opposite of V8 Supercars. Watch a DTM race where the hood comes off some time (one happened this year), the engines are right on the ground, the underhood is a joke. DTM cars are as close to street cars as funny cars are.

      Australia, if you value V8 Supercars, don't do this.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Pretty cool, be fun to see a Infinite M56 going against those cars too.
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