SCG’s Twin-Turbo Le Mans V8 Comes From the Shop That Made Hyundai’s WRC Engines

Glickenhaus is counting on Pipo Moteurs’ compact 3.5-liter V8 to take on the big boys at Toyota.

byMáté Petrány|
Hyundai News photo

A little over a year ago, James Glickenhaus suggested that SCG's top-class Le Mans effort will use an engine based on Alfa Romeo's excellent twin-turbo V6, a power plant that has plenty to do with Ferrari's new generation of twin-turbo V8s. However, a lot has changed since, starting with the SCG 007 switching to a 3.5-liter twin-turbo V8 designed by French motorsport legend Pipo Moteurs. 

Based on its experience gained through the Nürburgring 24's SCG 004C campaigns with Hewland racing gearboxes, Glickenhaus is also switching to an Xtrac unit for Le Mans, making this Alfa-liveried render from 2019 rather outdated compared to how the SCG 007 will indeed look in the hypercar class in 2021. Still, it's fun to see what could have been:

In case you haven't heard the name yet, more recently, French company Pipo Moteurs built Hyundai Motorsport's i20 WRC engine, the V8 twin-turbo for Bentley's Continental GT3 and the championship-winning WRX engines for Petter Solberg's team. The firm has also built GRC turbo-fours for Ken Block's Hoonigan Racing, Bryan Herta Autosport and Chip Ganassi Racing. In its spare time, Pipo is rebuilding and improving older WRC engines for both Peugeots and Fords.

Apparently, what Glickenhaus got for the 24 Hours of Le Mans against Toyota and ByKolles is a 3.5-liter twin-turbo using a pair of WRC heads over a machined V8 block. SCG told us that this is a short-stroke, low-revving engine tuned for durability, set to produce a very flat torque curve. The team will also use a "new artificial intelligence throttle" which keep the turbos spooled up regardless of how much the driver is on the loud pedal.

As for the body, the SCG 007's small scale composite model is already past a few rounds in the wind tunnel. One could argue that Toyota Gazoo Racing has a bigger system for the task at its motorsport and development center in Cologne, Germany.

To keep those headlines rolling, James Glickenhaus has also announced that in case Sebastian Vettel can't secure a seat in Formula 1 for 2021, he would offer him a drive in one of the two SCG 007s entered into the World Endurance Championship next year, keeping in mind that he can't pay the German superstar as much as Italy's favorite Scuderia.

So far, Sebastian Vettel had no comment. Mind you, we still need to get past 2020's round of the 24 Hours of Le Mans, which has been postponed to next month with no spectators in sight. Hopefully, next season, the pair of American cars painted red for the top class will have plenty of audience against Toyota and ByKolles, the German team powered by a Gibson LMP1 engine.

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