BTCC confirms hybrids for 2022, choses Cosworth Electronics as partner
British Touring Car Championship organiser TOCA has confirmed hybrid cars for the 2022 season and awarded a contract to Cosworth Electronics for the design, supply and servicing of the BTCC Hybrid System.
Last year in August it was announced that the BTCC would be the first major touring car championship in the world to use hybrid-powered cars. Now, BTCC specified the exact timing, pathway and technical details of their hybrid power. Although it could have been introduced from 2021, it was decided to stay with the original 2022 introduction date to allow ample preparation.
The contract was awarded to Cosworth Electronics after a successful round of tenders that met with the very challenging specifications – particularly those regarding packaging, performance and low-cost. All major TOCA technical partners worked very closely together to define the specification, technical integration and performance parameters of the hybrid system.
The additional hybrid power will be used by each driver for either passing or defending and will introduce new competitive strategies and opportunities during each BTCC race.
Performance simulations undertaken by Cosworth show that the most significant gains will be achieved at the low engine RPM ranges; the hybrid power burst will bring the engine up into the turbo ‘window’ more quickly. This will provide drivers deploying the system the chance to pull alongside or gain ground on the opposition. In a simulation using Silverstone Circuit, with two cars accelerating out of Copse Corner, the car with the hybrid power deployed should gain around 8m before the next braking zone.
After lap one, drivers will have control over the amount of their hybrid energy they use or regenerate – and when – during the course of each race. The driver will have a steering wheel mounted button to engage the hybrid once full traction has been achieved. The hybrid deactivates on a second button press, the use of brakes, on reaching the time or energy limit, a reduced throttle pressure or sudden acceleration/deceleration.
Prior to introduction, rigorous testing and simulations will refine the more exact nature of the driver-selectable hybrid power delivery (i.e. how many seconds per lap, when/how it can be used etc.) as well as configuring the varying amounts of regeneration and hybrid power that will be used to replace the current success ballast system.
The total weight of the hybrid system is well within the current operating window of all NGTC cars and their components; the total system weight will be some 10kg less than the maximum success ballast weight (75 kg) previously used.
Photos and sketches: BTCC,