In 1967, Ford and its GT40 took first place overall in the 24 Hours of Le Mans. No American team racing its own car has done so since, but that could change with the 2021 season of the World Endurance Championship whose highlight is the French classic.
Scuderia Cameron Glickenhaus, based in Danbury, Connecticut, is looking to take the win and beat the world again. It will do so by competing in the 2021 WEC season as Glickenhaus Racing, in the new Le Mans Hypercar class with the 007.
After an extensive build process, the first 007 hit Italy's Vallelunga racetrack on Thursday for its initial shakedown test, with Romain Dumas behind the wheel. Specific tests included calibration of the car's steering, transmission and newly developed V-8. The V-8 is a bespoke 3.5-liter twin-turbocharged mill developed by France's Pipo Moteurs.
Scuderia Cameron Glickenhaus 007 Le Mans Hypercar race car's V-8 engine
SCG hasn't provided any specs but LMH rules call for a maximum 670 hp. The LMH class, like the faster LMP1 class it replaces, allows for both hybrid and non-hybrid entries. This year non-hybrid LMP1 cars will be allowed to compete and in 2022 the regulations will allow cars from IMSA's new LMDh class as well. Balance of Performance rules will be used to equalize the playing field.
SCG had planned to go down the hybrid route but last year decided to drop this due to the weight and complexity it would add to the 007. LMH cars need to meet a minimum weight of 2,270 pounds.
SCG was the first to commit to the LMH class, though it's not entirely on its own. The company has teamed up with Joest Racing and Sauber to help with the 007's development and also the car's racing campaign. And Podium Advanced Technologies was tapped to construct the 007. The Italian engineering outfit has helped multiple other teams deliver class wins in the 24 Hours of Le Mans over the past decade.
Scuderia Cameron Glickenhaus 007 Le Mans Hypercar race car
The next stop for the 007 will be the official pre-season test, known as the Prologue, which is scheduled to take place at Portugal's Portimao racetrack from March 30-31. The first round of the 2021 WEC season will also be at Portimao on April 4. The main event, the 24 Hours of Le Mans, will run June 12-13.
LMH aims to reestablish a relationship between the top race cars and road cars, in contrast to the previous LMP1 prototypes. The rules require teams to build road cars with a similar powertrain concept to the race car. SCG plans to offer a road-going version of the 007, with the company previously listing a price of about $2.1 million.