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A little over a year since officials picked the Dallara proposal over those of its rivals, testing has begun in earnest on the next-generation IndyCar chassis.

The new car underwent the first of a dozen scheduled shake-down runs at the hands of Dan Wheldon, the reigning Indy 500 champion, at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course where the series competed this past weekend.

Dallara's clean-sheet design – which will be built at a new Stateside facility instead of the factory in Italy – was envisioned right from inception for use on both high-speed ovals and road courses, unlike the car it replaces which was designed for the speedways and later adapted for twistier circuits. Each team will be able to switch the bodywork depending on the type of track, but that's hardly where the differences between the new car and the old one end.

Instead of the 3.5-liter Honda V8s that powered the existing crop, the new car Wheldon was running packed a 2.2-liter turbocharged V6, also from Honda, that will be one of three engines – alongside Chevrolet and Lotus – that will proliferate across the field next year.

Engine suppliers will get their first taste of the new chassis in October, with deliveries to individual teams slated for December, but you can scope out the images from the test right now.


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  • 20 Comments
      Myself
      • 3 Years Ago
      Great, isn't it. A manufacturer sacked by a third tier F1 team (HRT) for not being able to provide a chassiss up to F1 standards is still a manufacturer of choice for Indy. I love Indy, but it's, at its very best, on par with GP2 series, Formula's junior league, accidently, also supplied by Dallara.
        ijardine
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Myself
        Maybe HRT just couldn't make any chassis work in F1? Dallara have a lot of experience and learn from mistakes so we shall see in 2012 how decent this new one is. GP2 has around 450 HP, Indycar in 2012 will have around 700HP + P2P 50-75 extra on tap and likely more if ever needed. Thus it will be quite a step up from GP2. Thankgoodness. The current spec with 650 basic HP on road courses and a poor chassis for road and street (it was built for Ovals only) is well due for retirement. Yep Indycar will be a basic spec chassis, but at least 3 manufacturers will be offering engines and aero kits so this is a big step fwd. The cost per team will be around 1/10th that of F1 so it could well be a succesfull formula especially since the franchise fee for a race will also be 1/10th of what FOM charge. Overall for fans of OW this is a good step forward. More variety, more power and hopefully better racing.
          ijardine
          • 3 Years Ago
          @ijardine
          Controversially I should add that Indycar has lead F1 in several surprising areas of regulations: 1) Fixed engine spec 2) Standard ECU for every team to use 3) One tire provider with several set,s with use of 2 types mandatory during each race 4) Powertrain has to last 3 race weekends 5) One fuel though Indycar uses ethanol not fossil fuel. Etc. The list gets longer. Surprisingly F1 has been dumbing down some areas of technology while for 2012 ndycar is stepping up. I hope both series stay around for years to come. The days of CART were great. Perhaps the new spec of Indycar can close that gap a little.
      snap_understeer_ftw
      • 3 Years Ago
      what kind of lap times? I m assuming the Pro Course (without the chicane before the Keyhole)
      Erik
      • 3 Years Ago
      I want a return to the various chassis used in CART during the early to 90s. In fact, I want the entire series to return to what it was in the 90s. The series is a shadow of its former self.
      Glynn Hadskey
      • 3 Years Ago
      I'm looking forward to it too. But it does seem a odd engine configuration. What relavance does a 2.2 Turbo V6 have in todays market? I guess about the same is a 3.5 NA V8 or a 2.65 Turbo V8. Or a carburated OHV 5.7 V8 for that matter. Seems to me that the formula should be relavant for manufacturers to get anything out of it.
        Victor
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Glynn Hadskey
        X2 I don't know that the hell F1 is thinking about with the upcoming 1.6 V6 turbo engines as well. Good were the days when we had V8, V10 and V12 competing against each other.
          jec4000
          • 3 Years Ago
          @Victor
          I believe it may have something to do with weight savings and more efficient and longer lasting motors. Its easier to sling a v6 with new technology around than a v8+.
      peakarach1
      • 3 Years Ago
      I think is going to be a goooooood year for HONDA.
      • 3 Years Ago
      [blocked]
      budwsr25
      • 3 Years Ago
      This car looks like crap. This car is going to destroy indycar.
      • 3 Years Ago
      [blocked]
        Jason
        • 3 Years Ago
        Autoblog seems to have a major spam problem on their hands. Every time I go into a comment section, I see these...
      Skicat
      • 3 Years Ago
      Wish Ford would get in the game with an Eco-Boost.
      Ross
      • 3 Years Ago
      I'm not sure I'm a gigantic fan of the Dallara aero kit...kinda looks like the Batmobile and the current car had a fling and 9 months later out popped this. I hope Indycar sticks with the aerokit introductions next year and that they provide some alternative looks. Can't wait to hear those Turbo and Twin-Turbo V-6 engines next year. Go Lotus!
      • 3 Years Ago
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      Groagun
      • 3 Years Ago
      If I remember correctly there were a few options to pick from and this one was the least of the bunch. I'm really disappointed and thought the new car was going to step out, way out I'd hoped. I'm sure it boils down to numbers and the Dallara option just made the most sense financially but in the long run I think it may hurt the series overall and keep it, at best, a distant second to F1 or even further by being passed by ALMS/LeMans.
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