Prototype

Cadillac Returns To Endurance Racing With The V8-Powered DPI-V.R

This is the mid-engined Caddy you've been waiting for.

Cadillac pulled the wraps off the DPi-V.R, its new and gorgeous looking, but unfortunately named, race car. It is set to compete in the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship series next year in the Prototype class. The automaker hasn’t competed in endurance racing since 2002, in case you were wondering. It’s return is meant to help promote its V-Performance models, as in the ATS-V and CTS-V (we’ll be driving the latter in a few weeks). Powering the DPi-V.R is a mid-mounted naturally aspirated 6.2-liter V8 making 600 horsepower.

All 600 of those horses are sent to the rear wheels with an X-TRAC paddle-shift transmission doling out the power. Power and torque must comply with IMSA regulations, which is why the engine puts out 600 hp—less than the CTS-V—and the revs max out at 7,600 RPM. That should be more than enough power for the RWD racer as it will only weigh in at 2,050 pounds. Cadillac’s production cars influenced the look of the racer, with the design of the lights and wheels looking like they were pulled straight out of the showroom. Even the air intake was designed in the shape (trapezoidal) of the Cadillac crest. One bit seen on production cars is the Rear Camera Mirror. I twas first on the CT6 and is now widely available throughout the lineup.

While the design of the body work was influenced by Cadillac, both the chassis and engine were built by third parties. Dallara, one of four approved builders, constructed the chassis. The power plant is sort of similar to the supercharged 6.2-liter V8 Cadillac currently uses, although it was built by ECR Engines. According to Road & Track the two engines share the same displacement and piston layout but not much else. Even if you don’t follow endurance racing the announcement of the Cadillac DPi-V.R should come as welcome news. Why? Because, a lot of new tech in the auto industry was first honed out on the race track.

If Cadillac is serious about giving ze Germans, and ze rest of the world, a run for the money with its performance cars then it’ll need to do more than just drop bigger and more powerful engines into them. Racing forces you to develop new tech in order to gain an edge, and said new tech can sometimes makes it way to production cars. If nothing else it’ll be awesome to watch Caddy’s new toy tear up the track.

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