Nissan will not return to the LMP1 class of the FIA World Endurance Championship until it has resolved the technical issues that blighted the debut of its GT-R LM NISMO car at the 24 Hours of Le Mans.
The Japanese manufacturer made its much anticipated return to LMP1 at the Circuit de la Sarthe in June with a unique design concept for its car, only to encounter a number of issues that meant none of its three runners were classified.
Nissan had already missed the opening two rounds of the 2015 WEC season before Le Mans, but was expected to return at the 6 Hours of Nurburgring at the end of August after being listed on the provisional entry list.
However, Nissan has today confirmed that it will remain in a test programme until the technical issues with the car are resolved.
“Nissan today announced that it will delay its return to the LMP1 class of the FIA World Endurance Championship and instead focus on technical issues that challenged its race team during the Le Mans 24 Hours,” a statement from the Japanese manufacture read.
“Issues with the energy recovery system (ERS) meant that Nissan had to run at the Le Mans 24 Hours on engine power alone.
“The bespoke Nissan V6 3-litre twin turbo petrol engine and the unique aerodynamics of the GT-R LM NISMO proved to be the main strengths of the car at Le Mans but without a fully working ERS, many of the car’s other systems were compromised.”
NISMO president Shoichi Miyatini made no secret of his disappointment, but underlined Nissan’s commitment to making its LMP1 programme succeed.
“We know people will be disappointed but be assured that nobody is more disappointed than us,” Miyatini said.
“We are racers and we want to compete but we also want to be competitive. That is why we have chosen to continue our test programme and prepare the GT-R LM NISMO for the strong competition we face in the World Endurance Championship.
“When you innovate you don’t give up at the first hurdle. We are committed to overcoming this challenge.”
Much of Nissan’s test work with the GT-R LM NISMO will continue at the Circuit of The Americas in Austin, Texas, and “a decision on the date for Nissan’s return to the World Endurance Championship will be made in due course, depending on the progress of the test programme.”