Autos: Chicago Auto Show News & Notes


Here’s a handful of news and notes from the media preview days at the 2015 Chicago Auto Show:

Nissan GT-R LM NISMO’s public debut

While it was revealed to the world on the whole during Super Bowl XLIX, this week’s Chicago Auto Show marks the first time the new Nissan GT-R LM NISMO LMP1 car has been revealed in a public setting.

The wraps came off the car during a Nissan launch event on Wednesday night, before they came off again during the Auto Show media preview itself on Thursday.

Darren Cox, NISMO’s global head of brand, marketing & sales, was on hand along with NISMO CEO Shoichi Miyatani, and three past Nissan GT Academy winners (Jann Mardenborough, confirmed to the LMP1 program, and past U.S. winners Steve Doherty and Nic Hammann).

The FIA World Endurance Championship season begins April 12 at Silverstone.

Ford GT a strong presence

After its official unveil at Detroit last month, the 2016 Ford GT – now adorned in Liquid Silver with black racing stripes – was also on hand as part of Ford’s fleet this show. Ford’s Garen Nicoghosian, (Ford GT senior designer) and Jamal Hameedi (Ford performance chief engineer) spoke Friday to give more details of the primarily carbon fiber car, which focuses on aerodynamics, efficiency and the EcoBoost powerplant.

Small racing presence outside the Nissan

While the Nissan was the star of the show among racecars, it wasn’t the only racecar on display.

Infiniti had the Red Bull Formula 1 show car at its booth, now listed with new driver Daniil Kvyat’s name alongside that of Daniel Ricciardo. The Alfa Romeo booth had some classic F1 cars as well, that were a sight to behold.

Two Andretti Autosport cars were featured. Ryan Hunter-Reay’s 2014 Indianapolis 500-winning No. 28 DHL Honda was featured in the Honda booth, and Tanner Foust’s No. 34 Rockstar VW Beetle (from Red Bull Global Rallycross) was at the VW stand. Both Foust and his Red Bull GRC teammate Scott Speed were on hand.

An early 1990s Eagle MK III Toyota GTP car, one of Carl Edwards’ No. 19 ARRIS Toyota show cars, and an NHRA Funny Car were in the Toyota booth. Additionally, the new Dallara IL15 Mazda Indy Lights chassis had prominent placing in Mazda’s booth.

IndyCar releases schedule for 2023 season

IndyCar schedule 2023
Douglas Stringer/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

The NTT IndyCar Series’ 2023 schedule will feature the same number of races and tracks as this season with some minor reshuffling of dates.

IndyCar will open the 2023 season March 5 on the streets of St. Petersburg, Florida, and will conclude Sept. 10 at WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca in Monterey, California. The 107th Indy 500 will take place May 28 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

The 17-race schedule will conclude with a stretch of eight races in the final nine weeks.

“The NTT IndyCar Series is on an impactful upward trajectory, making progress at a pace that befits our thrilling style of competition,” Penske Entertainment Corp. president and CEO Mark Miles said in a release. “The 2023 season provides an opportunity to further build on this trend, bringing our sport and its stars to more markets and households and reaching new consumers across the globe.”

There will be 15 events on NBC: 13 races (including six of the final seven) plus Indy 500 qualifying May 20-21. There also are three races on USA Network and the Toronto race exclusively on Peacock. All races on NBC and USA also will have live simulstreams on Peacock.

In partnership with NBC Sports, the 2022 IndyCar season was the most-watched in six years and the most-watched across NBC Sports on record. The 2022 season also was the most streamed season on record.

“We’re very excited for our 2023 NTT IndyCar Series schedule and to build on this past season’s viewership milestones,” NBC Sports vice president of programming Mike Perman said in a release. “In providing comprehensive coverage across NBC, Peacock and USA Network, NBC Sports is once again looking forward to telling the stories of these world-class drivers and this compelling series.”

Notable elements on the 2023 schedule:

–There will be the same balance of seven road course races, five street courses and five ovals.

–St. Pete will be the season opener for the 13th time.

–The Chevrolet Detroit Grand Prix will move from Belle Isle to the streets of downtown.

–The NASCAR doubleheader weekend at the IMS road course will shift to mid-August.

–The World Wide Technology Raceway event will move from Saturday to Sunday.

Start times for the 2023 events will be announced at a later date.

Here’s the 2023 IndyCar schedule:

Date Race/Track Network/Platform
Sun., March 5 Streets of St. Petersburg NBC, Peacock
Sun., April 2 Texas Motor Speedway NBC, Peacock
Sun., April 16 Streets of Long Beach NBC, Peacock
Sun., April 30 Barber Motorsports Park NBC, Peacock
Sat., May 13 Indianapolis Motor Speedway (Road Course) NBC, Peacock
Sun., May 28 The 107th Indianapolis 500 NBC, Peacock
Sun., June 4 Streets of Detroit NBC, Peacock
Sun., June 18 Road America USA Network, Peacock
Sun., July 2 Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course USA Network, Peacock
Sun., July 16 Streets of Toronto Peacock
Sat., July 22 Iowa Speedway – Race 1 NBC, Peacock
Sun., July 23 Iowa Speedway – Race 2 NBC, Peacock
Sun., Aug. 6 Streets of Nashville NBC, Peacock
Sat., Aug. 12 Indianapolis Motor Speedway (Road Course) USA Network, Peacock
Sun., Aug. 27 World Wide Technology Raceway NBC, Peacock
Sun., Sept. 3 Portland International Raceway NBC, Peacock
Sun., Sept. 10 WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca NBC, Peacock

*dates and networks/platforms are subject to change