Racing application for new 2015 Acura TLX
- Will run in highly competitive GT category
- Single-car entry for RealTime Racing and driver Peter Cunningham
Acura Motorsports today announced that the new 2015 Acura TLX GT will make its Pirelli World Challenge competition debut at the May 30-June 1 Detroit Belle Isle Grand Prix double-header race weekend.
To be campaigned by long time Acura Motorsports partner RealTime Racing, the new TLX GT will move Acura into the top category of the Pirelli World Challenge, facing competition that includes the Audi R8 LMS, Cadillac CTS-V, Chevrolet Corvette, Dodge Viper, Lamborghini Gallardo, Mercedes SLS, Nissan GTR, Porsche 911 and Ferrari 458.
“The competition in the 2014 Pirelli World Challenge is incredible, but Acura has never shied away from strong competition, in the marketplace or on the race track,” said Art St. Cyr, President of Honda Performance Development and Vice President, Product Planning and Logistics, American Honda. “The 2015 Acura TLX is a true luxury sport sedan, so it is fitting that the car be raced against several of its natural competitors, and even some up-market brands, in the Pirelli World Challenge.”
Developed from the production Acura TLX by HPD, the racing arm of American Honda Motor Co., Inc., the Acura TLX GT Race Car will feature HPD chassis and aerodynamic performance parts approved for Pirelli World Challenge competition, and will be powered by a direct-injected, twin-turbocharged V6 engine, developed by HPD from the normally aspirated, production TLX luxury sport sedan. It will utilize all-wheel drive, as found in Acura’s SH-AWD system.
RealTime Racing, the most successful team in Pirelli World Challenge history, will initially field a single Acura TLX GT for owner/driver Peter Cunningham, with a second car to be added at a later date.
RTR has raced and won with both Honda and Acura products for more than two decades. Since entering the Sports Car Club of America Pro Racing-sanctioned World Challenge series in 1993, RTR has scored a record 85 race victories on its way to 14 Manufacturers’ Championships and 14 Drivers’ Championships.
“In our 27 years of racing Hondas and Acuras, we have developed a clear understanding of what it takes to win races and championships,” RTR team principal Cunningham said. “In 2014, the Pirelli World Challenge GT class looks to be more competitive and diverse than at any time in the history of the series, and we look forward to the challenges that lie ahead. We will be working hard to develop the new TLX GT into a winning package. That’s what we love to do.”
About Honda Performance Development HPD was founded in 1993 as the performance arm of American Honda, to spearhead the company’s entry into Indy car racing. No other manufacturer has matched Honda’s success in Indy cars, which includes 204 race victories, 15 drivers’ championships, six manufacturers’ championships and nine consecutive Indianapolis 500 victories (2004-2012). In 2013, Honda powered veteran Scott Dixon to four race wins and the 2013 IZOD IndyCar Series championship; and Tristan Vautier to series Rookie of the Year honors.
HPD’s prototype racing efforts have resulted in more than 60 victories and multiple American Le Mans Series championships. The company’s sports-car racing debut in 2007 at the 12 Hours of Sebring marked the first win for HPD’s LM-V8 engine and the first for a Honda racing engine designed and developed outside of Japan. HPD won the LMP2 title in the inaugural 2012 World Endurance Championship and has twice won the LMP2 category at the 24 Hours of Le Mans since 2010. In 2013, HPD and Honda again swept the LMP1 and LMP2 manufacturers’, engine, team and drivers’ championships in the American Le Mans Series; while HPD-equipped Strakka Racing claimed the LMP1 class win at the 24 Hours of Le Mans for private team entries.