The Japanese manufacturer will field two factory-backed LMP1 cars named the Nissan GT-R LM Nismo, in deference to the flagship Nissan GT-R road car. The project was confirmed in a press conference in central London today (Friday).
Nissan hasn't revealed full technical details of the new GT-R LM Nismo prototype, although it has promised that it: "won’t be turning up in a vehicle which is a basically another hybrid that looks like another Porsche, Audi or Toyota. Our intention is to do something that is a little bit different.”
Nissan has steadily increased its participation in motorsport in recent times through innovative programs, such as Nissan PlayStation GT Academy and the ACO’s Garage 56 initiative, where it will this year compete with the experimental Zeod hybrid that will run outside of the general classification.
The new GT-R LM Nismo – which will also compete in the full FIA World Endurance Championship next year – gives Nissan the opportunity to return to Le Mans where the company has never won.
“The design and build of the Nissan GT-R LM Nismo is a global project with its DNA firmly rooted in Japan,” said Nismo president Shoichi Miyatani. “The team comprises engineers and technical crew from Japan, the US and Europe. We know that LMP1 competition is very tough, with serious manufacturer competition, but we are absolutely determined to make our cars competitive and to operate strongly against those competitors.
“We have chosen to take the GT-R name to Le Mans as the GT-R symbolizes the ultimate in Nissan’s performance. It is a true aspirational brand; a car our fans, our customers love to drive, and love to own. We have been using GT-R in motorsport for many years now, in Super GT and GT3. For us LM P1 is the ultimate test. We have unfinished business at Le Mans and now we have our chance to target victory.”