By on July 10, 2015


Guidelines for the new Australian V8 Supercar series outline specifications for its new cars, including an option to use smaller engines for the manufacturers who compete.

According to the racing series, the new platform “allows more flexibility in terms of body style and engine configuration, provided they comply with the regulations. The V8 engine, which has been mandated for more than 20 years, is also expected to continue as the dominant power plant of the sport.”

The guidelines allow for 4-, 6- or 8-cylinder engines, as long as they meet power specifications. The plans also call for a minimum noise limit of 85 to 95 dB. Take that, Bernie.

Currently, five manufacturers compete in the series: Ford, Holden, Mercedes-Benz, Nissan and Volvo. Two of the five manufacturers — Nissan and Volvo — don’t offer their production cars used in the race series with V8 engines.

The new regulations also allow for a wider range of body styles — presumably to entice more manufacturers to compete such as BMW — provided that the cars are right-hand drive, four-seat, front-engined, rear-wheel drive and “accurately reflect” the look of a production model. GT cars with four seats would be allowed under the new rules.

Currently, cars race with different engines on a uniform chassis. Both Mercedes-Benz and Nissan use fundamentally different engines than Ford and Holden. 

The new generation supercar program was started last November and will be implemented at the beginning of 2017. The V8 Supercar season runs from February to December.

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14 Comments on “New V8 Supercars Rules: Smaller Engines (Maybe), More Cars (Maybe)...”

  • avatar

    “The plans also call for a minimum noise limit of 85 to 95 dB.”

    Am I reading that right? Minimum noise levels? As in “Your car must be this loud to ride this ride”?

    Because that’s freaking awesome.

    • 0 avatar

      Despite efforts to be more lady like, every now and then Australia goes back to being Australia for a bit. Love it.

    • 0 avatar

      Aussie V8 Supercars, plus Touring Car Masters, Improved Production, and the Ute series are the only major racing events I will go out of my way to watch.

      Both the production values and racing are better than anything the US has on TV at the moment, as far as I know.

  • avatar

    CAFE strikes again.

  • avatar

    In the short-term this will work, it will ignite a lot of interest but in the longer term it has been shown a million times over that motor racing with equivilency formulae does not work.

    It will degenerate into a massive fight over parity and fairness, it always does. Then it will get insanely expensive as companies try to bend the rules. THis has been proven world wide many, many times, it does not work, never has.

    • 0 avatar

      I don’t know why you’re so sure of that. In LMP1 category of the WEC championship we have seen, for the last few years, a hybrid diesel-electric Audi R18 with a flywheel hybrid system running very closely with a hybrid Toyota using a naturally aspirated V8 engine and a super-capacitor, against a Porsche using a 2.0 V4 engine with a hybrid-electric drivetrain with a more traditional battery energy store. Likewise, in the GT category of WEC racing, we see a Porsche with a 4 liter 6-cylinder engine competing successfully against Corvette with a 5.5L V8 engine, and a Viper with even a bigger V10 engine.

  • avatar

    Just curious (I have a Hot Wheels Ford Falcon Race Car) how close is profile of the V8 Supercars compared to the production car? Do they have a standard profile like NASCAR did/does, or is the production profile on a standard chassis?

    • 0 avatar

      A hell of a lot closer than NASCAR

    • 0 avatar

    • 0 avatar

      The latter although some cars have minor tweaks to equalise wheelbase etc.

      Also the Volvo has a 60 degree flat plane crank V8 related to the one in the XC90. The Nissan was using production-based cylinder heads but that has or is about to change.

      It will be interesting to see how they intend to paritise turbo engines.

    • 0 avatar

      V8SC cars are silhouette cars. They use tube frame chassis, and many “control parts”, such as a sequential transmission, suspension and brakes. However, V8SC are still closer to the “stock cars” than many other series because they use production body panels, headlights, and doors that actually open (unlike the idiotic door that don’t open in NASCAR). V8SCs also use production based engine blocks, but they have to match the displacement for something like 5L. As a result of these rules, we see cars like Nissan Altima and Volvo S60 racing, even though there is no production Altima or S60 with RWD and a V8 engine.

      Having said that, after having watched every V8SC race since 2011, I firmly believe that V8SC are the best touring car series in the world. First reason are the race tracks. Just like the BTCC race tracks, the V8SC race tracks are very good for stock car racing, and in fact a lot better than BTCC. One problem that WTCC and DTM have is that they try to race on Formula 1-like race tracks, and that never worked well. Even the few races V8SCs had on F1 tracks did not go well. I can recall many many truly epic V8SC races that happened on race tracks like Tasmania or Gold Coast, and many fans do not even consider those the best tracks. And the Bathurst races on the Mount Panorama were even a level above.

      Next advantage the V8SCs have is that they do use actual production body panels, actual working headlights and rear lights, unlike the stupid idiotic NASCAR cars that have painted headlights. The V8SC are big, realistic, and still damn loud and fast. I caught a few races on Speed TV in 2010 and 2011 and was shocked. Nothing comes close to this, except perhaps to BTCC, but unlike BTCC, V8SC does not rely on subjective rules like reversed grids or success ballast.

    • 0 avatar

      Body work comes off the same assembly line as production car sheet metal. However, it can be cut and trimmed or added to so it will fit around the homologated chassis.

  • avatar

    One thing I don’t fully get is how can a car with a turbo 2.0L 4-inline cylinder engine successfully compete against the fire breathing 5L V8 engined monsters we see racing in V8SC right now? The current V8SC engines are producing somewhere in the neighborhood of 600-700HP, and they have been supposedly de-tuned from the maximum power output they’re capable of. As a result, those V8 engines have been pretty darn reliable. On the other hand, the 2 liter 4-cylinder engines used in BTCC produce about 300HP of power output. Yes, they had been detuned and as a result they’re very reliable. But don’t you see a 200-300HP gap to the 5.0L V8 engine that produces at least 600HP, and is also detuned from its max output? How are the race organizers going to solve this disparity? Are they going to de-tune the V8 engines so the little 2.0L inline-4s could keep up?

  • avatar

    As yet, the new fangled quad cam 32v v8s havent caught up to the old pushrod Ford/GM motorsport v8s.

    At time of introduction there was talk that the 32v v8s would pose an unfair advantage to the old tech pushrods.

    It hasnt turned out that way…the pushrod v8s have decades of development and they have more power and better economy than the new quad cam v8s.

    I dont fear for the four cylinders… what I do fear is the day someone uses a turbo 3.5 to 4.0 v6 or v8 and boosts its and it ends up being an arms race to what end… but then i’m not a huge fan of this or any motorsport these days

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