Maserati is set to return to sports car racing this year with a new GT2-spec race car based on its MC20 supercar.
The new race car is officially called the Maserati GT2, and it made its debut on Friday on the sidelines of the 24 Hours of Spa, the highlight of the SRO-sanctioned GT World Challenge Europe.
While that series is open to GT3-spec cars, the Maserati is set to contest SRO's GT2 European Series. The series is open to customer teams and includes race cars based on the Audi R8, KTM X-Bow, Mercedes-Benz AMG GT, Porsche 911, and more.
Maserati's GT2 will start racing at the tail-end of 2023 and participate in the full 2024 season, the automaker said.
2023 Maserati GT2 race car
The GT2 is closely linked to the MC20 road car. It runs the same twin-turbocharged 3.0-liter V-6 (output is dependent on Balance of Performance rules), though the race car adopts a much wilder aerodynamic design with larger side intakes and an adjustable rear wing attached via swan-neck struts. It also has its own front splitter and rear diffuser, and according to Maserati a fully flat floor helps improve airflow.
The race car's entire body shell is made from lightweight composite materials. The body panels feature a quick-release design to ensure new components can be swapped in quickly, Maserati said. The fenders sport a new design to accommodate a wider track. They feature louvers up front and the aforementioned larger side intakes at the rear, the latter aimed at radiators.
Other components specific to the race car include the adjustable dampers, adjustable anti-roll bars, 6-speed sequential transmission, quick-release steering wheel, and 6.5-inch driver information display. The ABS system is also specific to the race car and can be calibrated by the driver from behind the wheel.
2023 Maserati GT2 race car
The GT2 has some big shoes to fill. Some readers will recall the MC20's predecessor, the Ferrari Enzo-based MC12, competed in the FIA GT Series during the 2000s and won three 24 Hours of Spa races (2005, 2006, and 2008).
Maserati's return to motorsports kicked off this year with a factory-backed team competing in the Formula E World Championship. The automaker is also working on an MC20 track car that's based on the MC20 and could potentially be a precursor for a race car designed for the GT classes of the IMSA SportsCar Championship or FIA World Endurance Championship.
“Our DNA and our spirit have always lain in racing,” David Grasso, Maserati's CEO, said in a statement. “Now more than ever we want to rekindle and nourish that competitive passion that has always characterized and motivated us to achieve major milestones.”