Chevrolet-powered racecars in the 2015 Verizon IndyCar Series will feature Chevrolet-developed aero packages.
Chevrolet introduced the road course/short oval body design today at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. It is distinguished from the previous racecar with new front wing elements, sculpted side pods and a new rear wing.
A speedway configuration for the aero kit, designed for high-speed ovals, will be introduced ahead of its competitive debut at Indianapolis in May.
“This is an important milestone in Chevrolet’s involvement in IndyCar racing,” said Jim Campbell, General Motors U.S. vice president of Performance Vehicles and Motorsports. “We focused on developing an aerodynamic package that delivers an balanced combination of downforce and drag, along with integrated engine performance. It’s a total performance package.”
The new Chevy road course aero configuration delivers greater aerodynamic performance than the previous design.
“This new aero kit provides Chevrolet drivers the capability to enter and exit corners faster, while maintaining high speeds on the straights,” said Chris Berube, Chevrolet IndyCar program manager.
Development of Chevrolet’s new IndyCar aero package consisted of nine key phases:
- Conducted baseline analysis of the “DW12” racecar aerodynamics
- Established clear design goals for the new aero kit, which included making the most of downforce, drag and engine performance
- Developed design concepts using computer-aided design (CAD)
- Analyzed structural properties, using finite element analysis (FEA)
- Simulated aerodynamic properties using computational fluid dynamics (CFD)
- Produced test parts using rapid prototyping processes, such as 3D printing
- Conducted testing of a 50-percent scale model in a rolling–road wind tunnel
- Conducted testing of a full-scale racecar in a rolling-road wind tunnel
- Conducted track testing of prototype aero kit on select race tracks, including Homestead-Miami Speedway, Circuit of The Americas (Austin, Texas), Texas Motor Speedway and Phoenix International Raceway.
“We took a clean-sheet approach to the aero kit, delivering an optimized and efficient design that should really give our Chevrolet teams an edge,” said Berube.
The road course configuration’s changes over the 2014 DW12 aero package are easily identified by major components, including:
- Front wing that features new pedestal-mounted “front uppers” toward the outer edges
- New sculpted “wheel wedges” in front of the rear tires
- An engine cover and side pods that have more compact shapes, achieved through a revised turbocharger and exhaust system layout
- New larger rear bumper pods
- A multi-element upper rear wing, along with louvered end plates.
The all-new Chevrolet racecars will compete for the first time on March 29 at the Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg, Fla.
Will Power drove his Team Penske Chevrolet to the Verizon IndyCar Championship in 2014, while teammates Helio Castroneves and Juan Pablo Montoya finished second and fourth in points, respectively. Scott Dixon and Tony Kanaan, from Chip Ganassi Racing Teams, finished third and seventh in points, respectively, giving Chevrolet five of the top seven places. Chevrolet claimed its third straight manufacturer title 2014 and has won it each year since re-entering IndyCar racing in 2012.