Red Bull Global Rallycross CEO Colin Dyne is planning to stage his own version of the great race in 2019.It will be electric versus gas, as the GRC plans to race gas-powered cars head to head with electric-powered cars in its Supercars class. Dyne expects as many as six electric cars on the grid next year.
“There’s a lot of comparisons in all the magazines,” Dyne told Autoweek. “You read all over the place comparisons between a Tesla and a Lamborghini, the new Porsche electric cars to the current cars on the market. This is perfect for what’s going on out there in the marketplace — people doing comparisons.
“Now they can see a comparison on the racetrack.”
The series originally announced in late 2016 that it was planning an all-electric stand-alone series for 2018. Those plans have been scrapped. Now, it’s full speed ahead with the ground-breaking combo class.
“We look at electric vehicles (in the GRC) as something where it’s going to take its own path, just like on the road,” Dyne said. “How many people are going to buy electric? How many people are going to buy gas combustion engines? We can’t determine that today. That’s why we decided to put the class together.
“Over time, one of them will surpass the other one. Obviously, the Supercar combustion engine is our main field. How many electric cars come in, how many manufacturers come in will be determined. We’ve got some manufacturers even talking about doing both — electric and combustion.”
The addition of four-wheel-drive electric-powered cars will undoubtedly call for additional work in the offseason to make sure the new series will produce good racing. Dyne says the series hopes to release the specs for the new cars in early 2018.
“We’ve done a lot of computer simulations already,” Dyne said. “The cars are going to be really, really close to each other. Then it will be up to the series to figure out the balance of performance.
“As of now, I don’t see the electric cars outperforming the gas cars straight off the bat. It will be interesting. Some of the manufacturers are ready to go electric, and some are not.
“I think every car manufacturer today is putting a lot of their R&D into alternative power sources — electric or hydrogen or whatever. I think the gas engine has been developed as far as it’s going to be developed. This whole new era of small displacement turbos, I think, is going to stay for a long time, but I don’t think there is going to be a lot of development put into those anymore.”