DTM Loses 6 of its 18 cars After 2018 as Mercedes Withdraws

Discussion in 'Sports Car Racing' started by LewTheShoe, Jul 25, 2017.

  1. LewTheShoe

    LewTheShoe Team Owner

    DTM, the German touring car series modeled after Nascar to some extent, seems to be in a state of complete disarray. In 2017, the grid shrank from 24 cars to 18 as each of the three manufacturers reduced its commitment from eight cars to six. Attendance has fallen, steeply I believe though I could be wrong about that. Race formats have been altered, parity rules have shifted this way and that, and scandals of team orders and team tactics have been common.

    And now Mercedes announces its departure after 2018. Mercedes offers the spin that resources will be shifted from DTM to Formula E, and I believe Audi and BMW have also announced Formula E programs. These are certainly interesting times for DTM.

    (Link to Motorsports.com article about Merc's withdrawal)
  2. DUN24

    DUN24 Skeptical of the Spectacle

    Formula E is destroying Euro pro motorsports. The corporate dollar is phucking amazing.
    FLRacingFan likes this.
  3. FLRacingFan

    FLRacingFan Team Owner

    This could very well be the end of DTM (again). It could carry on with just Audi and BMW, but they'd have to pick up the load substantially. And the series was already in a decline. Maybe this will wake them up though, the cars are ridiculous and "touring" is the last thing I would use to describe them. I still have fun watching them though.
  4. FLRacingFan

    FLRacingFan Team Owner

    WEC is probably next...Porsche might be out the door in favor of Formula E in within the next month or so.
  5. StandOnIt

    StandOnIt Farm Truck

    Nascar Whelen series over there is growing, they added a couple of races recently.
  6. DUN24

    DUN24 Skeptical of the Spectacle

    Wait till Chevy and Ford find out about Formula E, the greatest racing series in history. Lol
  7. DUN24

    DUN24 Skeptical of the Spectacle

    The racing blows in FE... and everyone is flocking to it. What a shame.
    LouieLouie likes this.
  8. LewTheShoe

    LewTheShoe Team Owner

    There are substantial parallels between Formula E and the evolution of motocross into supercross. Supercross was born as an attempt to bring the racing to the audience... venues in town with all the conveniences of existing football stadiums. So easy to get there, and remain comfortable during the event.

    No one has been able to duplicate the success of supercross with four wheels. Cars in football stadiums have been tried, but car racing doesn't compress into that space effectively. Car racing on street circuits has tried, but with sporadic success due to high costs, political hurdles, and generally lousy racing relative to the product on traditional circuits. There is really no four-wheel counterpart to supercross.

    Formula E just might be the way. The city circuits are conducive to creating an in-town festival. They are so small and so slow that costs are much, much lower than setting up a temporary street circuit for F1 or IndyCar or Nascar or V-8 Supercars. And as for the quality of the product... just don't compare it to real car racing. We are not here for an F1 race. We are here to save the world! We are developing new technologies that will... blah, blah, blah.

    Seriously, it just might work. Maybe not for you and me, but it could be hipster heaven :lilangel:
    FLRacingFan and DUN24 like this.
  9. StandOnIt

    StandOnIt Farm Truck

    It's a green thing, cheaper than hell for manufacturers to get into compared to fossil fueled cars. Without decent battery power, it makes sense to have races on inner city courses. It is filling a notch IMO. Other parts of the world pay thru the nose for Gas. They have some really decent electric and elec/hybrid cars. More popular than over here for the time being anyway.
    FLRacingFan likes this.
  10. DUN24

    DUN24 Skeptical of the Spectacle

    I'll take the Mickey Thompson Stadium Trucks over Formula E any day of the week. Lol
  11. LouieLouie

    LouieLouie Team Owner

    Yep and as soon as the hipsters move on to the next hipster thing to do, the series will fold like a cheap suit.
  12. Doc Austin

    Doc Austin Team Extreme Flight

    Well, first, this is what happens when you rely so heavily on manufacturers to support your series.

    So, what does WEC do? They can't have a championship with just Toyota, and Toyota probably wouldn't have any part of that either. Add to that, what is lemans going to do? It was embarrassing enough they only had five cars in their top division, and if Porsche goes Toyota could run utterly unopposed. Would they really run a race with only Bykolles in the top division?

    I really do think it's time IMSA and the FIA/ACO sat down and hammer out a compromise for a universal DPI formula. The P2 class is going great guns, and that could only get better if it became the premier division. Where they have to be careful is keeping a lid on costs, and also mandating the manufacturers to sell their cars to privateers. Otherwise P2 will spin out of control like LMP1 has.

    If P2 or DPI or whatever it would be called became a one world formula that gave the privateers a chance at overall victory, we could be staring at something like the early Group C days. Most people would agree that was probably the best era in sportscar history, and the common ground would be solvent, competitive privateers showing up in force. Right now we have at least 25 P2 cars that could be either converted or kept as is and BOPed, so if you throw in a few factories we would already have a better supported series than Group c ever was.

    Actually, we have a really good opportunity here. We could keep the current P2 chassis and add manufacturer specific bodywork. I believe the Gibson is 6 liters so we keep that, or at least allow it to stay. Then, the new formula could be based around the P2 chassis and 6 liter production based engines, or even 5 liter (because just about every manufacturer has one of those). Like this, there is no BOP (at least among the new cars) because everyone runs at the same weight and displacement. The existing Gibson cars could be BOPed for two years and after that everyone has to conform. This way the P2 teams keep racing what they already have, only for overall victory, and they are joined byu the new cars with production engines with manufacturer bodywork. That should give us a mega field on both sides of the Atlantic. Then in two years it all morphs into one series were everyone plays to the same rules.

    Of course, it's so simple and makes so much sense that no one would go for it.
    downnice and LouieLouie like this.
  13. Kiante

    Kiante Team Owner

    Formula E is finger ******* every other FIA discipline.

    I like FE as well, but damn is it really this serious?
    DUN24 likes this.
  14. toledo47

    toledo47 Team Owner

    global rallycross has been trying to bring races to downtown areas, not in stadiums, usually in empty parking lots they construct small circuits.
    actually, the are often held in the parking lots of sports stadiums, like rfk stadium in Washington dc and Nassau Colosseum on long island as well as places like the las vegas strip, kentucky state fair, texas state fair, etc...
    though grc events arent very big yet, i definitely would not call it a success yet, but its a great series attempting to bring car races downtown in big markets like supercross does.
    FLRacingFan and LewTheShoe like this.
  15. LewTheShoe

    LewTheShoe Team Owner

    An excellent point about what rallycross is attempting to do. Rallycross has a certain kinship with supercross, as you point out. I've tried to watch a few events on TV. I haven't been able to get interested yet... but that's just me.
  16. DUN24

    DUN24 Skeptical of the Spectacle

    It's great racing. I'd recommend checking out FIA World Rallycross. It's what GRC is hoping to become.
    FLRacingFan likes this.
  17. DUN24

    DUN24 Skeptical of the Spectacle

    I'm pretty sure it's because the assholes at the FIA are pushing it hard. Interesting that there is no coverage of most FIA series around Europe here in America, yet we get every FE race plus highlight shows. Money is being dumped into it and I'm not convinced it will ever be a fun series.
  18. Doc Austin

    Doc Austin Team Extreme Flight

    This is why we can never let the French have any say in American sportscar racing. The only reason in the world we had for adopting and modifying their P2 class is because it's the only good idea they ever had.

    Formula E will actually end up being good for all of us. Eventually we will have to give up the sound and smell of racing as we know it, but if the technology developments in this series leads to practical electric road cars, we will eventually never miss it.

    I grew up flying methanol and nitro powered model airplanes, but the electrics have become so superior that the old internal combustion planes are rapidly disappearing from flying clubs. Electrics are clean, quiet and reliable. Because they create so little vibration, the rest of the airframe takes less stress and requires much less maintenance. These attributes would make for a fantastic road car, not to even mention that the performance of fully developed electrics will be utterly mind blowing.
  19. toledo47

    toledo47 Team Owner

    I only found out about grc a few years ago, i love it. Try to give it a chance, watch the final from Louisville this year, that was some awesome racing, its easily found on youtube.
  20. toledo47

    toledo47 Team Owner

    I think they both have their good points, though World Rallycross is no doubt the stronger series. I really like that GRC starts 10 cars in the final versus the 6 that they start in WRX. Especially watching in person, at a large circuit, 6 cars doesnt feel like much... great racing but i wish they would make the field 8 or 10 cars.
    I went to one WRX race, a giant paddock with around 30 cars, beautiful sight, but I could only watch 6 battle it out on the fairly large Trois Rivieres course.... I do love the series though, good stuff. They are doing more right than GRC is.
    FLRacingFan and DUN24 like this.
  21. DUN24

    DUN24 Skeptical of the Spectacle

    I love WRX's qualifying format. I was talking to Bucky Lasek last year about it and he said that was his biggest gripe with GRC is how much outside influence can contribute to advancement into the semis and the finals. But yeah 10 cars in a final is much better.
  22. DUN24

    DUN24 Skeptical of the Spectacle

    I've grown up in very loud vehicles. It's going to be difficult to let go but yeah if they can perfect the performance, we might have ungodly racecars and road cars.
  23. Doc Austin

    Doc Austin Team Extreme Flight

    It was the same thing with model planes. I grew up flying methanol powered planes and was hand starting (prop flipping) Fox 45 motors when I was 4 years old. I grew up loving it and in the 80s I was pylon racing 200mph Formula One planes with open stack exhausts running 22,000 rpm. They were insufferably loud, but at the time we actually liked that.

    I also grew up going to Sebring and to Daytona for the 24, the Paul Revere, and the Daytona 500, and Indianapolis for the Indy 500. Then I raced high speed karts with unmuffled tuned pipes, so you can say I have always been a bit of a motorhead.

    I eventually quit flying and a friend got me back in when the electrics started to get good. at first I missed the sound, but it did not take long to learn to love the turbine like sound of an electric. At first electrics seemed slow, but that was from the lack of sound. I eventually got used to that and can sense the speed without the loud noise. In fact, we still have a few gas planes at the field and I find them terribly annoying. It's all in what you get used to.
    DUN24 likes this.
  24. FLRacingFan

    FLRacingFan Team Owner

    Yeah, it's incredible how much FE content there is here. I'm pretty sure they have a documentary series of sorts that gets played here too. No doubt the series and the FIA are putting up money for it. I don't think anyone outside of NASCAR, IndyCar, and F1 get paid for broadcast rights in America.
  25. FLRacingFan

    FLRacingFan Team Owner

    There should be more than ByKolles in LMP1-L next year. It won't be anything huge at first, since the class is really just being revived, but it's a start. And with teams now realizing they have a shot to win overall they might make the jump up from LMP2 or elsewhere. Although I wonder if just having enough different OEM-badged or -built engines is enough to retain world championship status. And I think Toyota is almost certainly gone now as well. They have no reason to compete - if they win Le Mans it wasn't against real competition, if they lose it's the ultimate embarrassment of losing only to LMP1-Ls and LMP2s. Maybe they sit out for a few years and help re-write the 2020 regs because that's a certainty to be changed. Those regs aren't an improvement and Peugeot ain't coming.

    I think any sort of international adoption of DPi will have to wait until 2021, after the current four-year cycle of LMP2/DPi regs expire at the end of 2020. Once the cars have been built for one purpose I don't think you can just adapt them for another, although I could maybe see the FIACO opening up Le Mans to DPi in the short term in their own class or something. But I think even that would be Le Mans-only and not for a full season.
  26. Doc Austin

    Doc Austin Team Extreme Flight

    The FIA has thrown the rulebook out on a whim before. If they have to screw one or two teams for the betterment of the entire series, that's not so bad. They could easily compensate them with some jack and move on to something that actually works.

    They could very easily incorporate DPI into P2 as one championship, which is exactly what IMSA has done. IMSA uses the Gibson engine as it's baseline for performance (and adjusts the BOP around those cars). Like this, current P2 cars not only get to stay in the game, but they would be racing for overall victory and with virtually no investment would go from supporting spec class to overall challengers in a championship that actually means something, especially if a lot of manufacturers come in.

    Existing P2 teams have absolutely nothing to lose and everything to gain because their cars are the baseline. They will always be competitive. They could either keep the cars the way they are, or adapt them to DPI and maybe enjoy a little factory backing. The way manufacturers seem to like DPI, and am sure a few of ours would come over and you'de probably get some like Peugeot and maybe even Mercedes. Toyota could very easily join.

    The part I think is important is that they need to keep the factories out and have them involved solely as vendors. Right now P2 is working because it's all privateers running an affordable car. Using the manufacturers strictly as vendors allows them in the game, but does not allow them to drive the cost of competing through the roof before they inevitably bail out. You keep the factory teams out and the privateers solvent and healthy. That's how you build a great series.

    The wrong way to go is to try to save LMP1 or even revamp it. P2 is a solid championship that's ready for the big stage right now if only the FIA allows it. We have at least 25 available European P2 cars right now, and all winter to build more to fill the demand.
    Last edited: Jul 29, 2017
  27. donthaveanickname

    donthaveanickname Team Owner

    The LMP 1-Hybrid class is dead, the DTM isn't dead yet. I could live without it, but I hope it won't die (again).
    They now have 1 year to search a new manufacturer, but I don't see Opel coming back or anyone else joining. If they don't find a new manufacturer, Audi and BMW would have to expand to at least 8 cars. Otherwise TCR Germany will be our No.1 Touring Car series from 2019 on. They already have over 30 entries for each race.
  28. downnice

    downnice Car Chief

    Both the France family/IMSA and the FIA/WEC/ACO need to get to the table and iron something out before Endurance racing falls apart
  29. FLRacingFan

    FLRacingFan Team Owner

    The FIA and ACO can fend for themselves at this point, IMO. They already rejected DPi at Le Mans after leading IMSA on with the idea that their cars would be eligible to race. Unless they start toying with the idea of not allowing IMSA to utilize the global LMP2 and GTE regulations I don't really see the need to negotiate with them. Their mess, let them fix it. Starting with the goofy 2020 LMP1 regulations.
    Doc Austin likes this.
  30. Doc Austin

    Doc Austin Team Extreme Flight

    Well.................. Exactly.

    The best case scenario would be IMSA allowing the P3 cars to move up to the Weather Tech series replace the departing PC cars. We might even get enough cars to let them have their own race and run the GT cars in theirs. Then, drop the PC cars down to Mazda Prototype Challenge to replace the departing P3 cars. That way the pro cars are in the pro series and the development cars are in the development series.

    Then, the FIA needs to adopt DPI and rename it to whatever satiates their overblown, inflated and constipated sense of self importance. Also, run the P3 cars in the WEC.

    Whammo. Instant unified world sportscar formula that makes sense, that is affordable and sustainable.

    Of course, we already know that out of pure stubborn Gallic pride the FIA will continue to keep LMP1 on life support by having a world manufacturers championship just one manufacturer. I'm betting Toyota wants no part of that, so it's fait accompli.

    In the end, the FIA will have to rely on the same privateers they did not give a crap about when they priced them out of that class to begin with. Even at that, we are talking about less than a handful of cars and some of the ones announced may not even make it. What would they do if they had a race and no one showed up?

    This is an important lesson that keeps refreshing itself every 10 years or so. The FIA would rather burn the entire sport to the ground rather than lose control of any aspect of it. This is why Big Bill France set up IMSA to begin with. He was never going to allow the French to have any say in how US motorsports are run, and the never ending embarrassing failure of the WEC is proof enough he was right.
  31. Doc Austin

    Doc Austin Team Extreme Flight


    Sadly, we can't. We have a partnership with them, even if they don't take it as seriously as we do.

    Yeah, that was kind of crappy, but then again, IMSA is at fault for trusting the FIA and ACO to begin with.

    And not allowing DPIs was a good thing for them too. I don't think it's unreasonable to say the Cadillac would have easily won Lemans this year with the LMP1 cars hobbling around after an hour in the garage. How embarrassing would it have been for ZE inferior American car to win ZE CLASSIC, eh?

    We need to avoid that because right now, at least on this side of the Atlantic, we have stability, something which every day appears to becoming more and more of an exclusive American concept in motorsports.

    I believe we have a three year contract with them, so we have at least that much time to come up with something different. All IMSA has to do is change a few things in the wording and keep running what they have. And, ask yourself why would the FIA make a bad business move like that unless it's just to avoid the goring of their sacred Gallic pride when the DPI they rejected survives and their dream LMP1 swirls round and round the bowl to the sewer of extinction?

    You can bet they will ride the LMP1 banana boat all the way to the bottom because they never admit that IMSA took their own idea and made it sustainable, all the while as the FIA series swirls round a round, faster and faster around to bowl that leads to extinction.

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