BMW M Team WRT completed their first test with the M Hybrid V8 during the last full week of June, in preparation for their entry into the FIA World Endurance Championship (WEC) Hypercar class and the 24 Hours of Le Mans in 2024.
The initial rollout of the car took place on May 27th at the BMW Dingolfing plant in Germany with Nick Yelloly doing the driving. Following that first test to make sure everything was working properly; the WRT team took the car to the Aragón circuit in Spain for three days of testing with drivers Jesse Krohn, Maxime Martin, Sheldon van der Linde, Dries Vanthoor, Dan Harper, and Max Hesse all getting turns behind the wheel.
The test in Spain was a success, with no problems occurring with the car over the three days. BMW M Team WRT will be busy testing the car extensively through the coming months, in preparation for the WEC season opener in Qatar in March 2024. BMW M Motorsport is planning to have as many works drivers as possible drive the car, to get feedback from a multitude of sources.
Head of BMW M Motorsport Andreas Roos was satisfied with the first test miles of the car. “The past week was a very good start to our WEC preparation program,” he said. “The BMW M Hybrid V8 ran smoothly during the first test drives and provided our engineers and the team with the opportunity to gain a wealth of insights right from the start. Of course, the experiences we have gathered together with BMW M Team RLL in the IMSA series races have also contributed to this. At the beginning of the LMDh program, we deliberately chose to compete exclusively in the IMSA series first and later in the FIA WEC. We are now benefiting from this approach. Although the start was successful, there is still a lot of work to be done on the way to the first races.”
Works driver Jesse Krohn was also very impressed with the car, which was also his first time driving a prototype. “The test was an incredible experience for me,” he said. “It was my first outing in a prototype and also the first collaboration with the WRT team. I had high expectations of their working methods because, as an opponent, I have experienced their strength over the years. And I must say that all my expectations were met. The team works together fantastically, and I had perhaps the smoothest test of my career. I quickly found my way in the car and hopefully, I was able to help the team gather important data because that’s what it’s all about in such a first test. I thoroughly enjoyed the experience in this great car and I thank everyone involved for allowing me to contribute to the program.” —David Haueter
[Photos courtesy BMW]