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WEC’s Biggest Prototype Class Since the ’90s Teases a New Le Mans Golden Era

With nineteen entries and nine manufacturers, the new LMH class is delivering on its promise to revive top-flight endurance racing.
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The World Endurance Championship (WEC) has announced its 37-strong entry list for the 2024 season. Not only is the longstanding LMP2 class axed, and GTE is now replaced with LMGT3, but an interesting shift has occurred: The top-flight Le Mans Hypercar (LMH) class is bigger than LMGT3. In fact, with 19 cars spanning nine manufacturers, the 2024 LMH entry list represents the biggest prototype field since the late 1990s.

For 2024, the LMH class will be contested by more major constructors than ever: Toyota, BMW, Porsche, Alpine, Lamborghini, Ferrari, Peugeot, and Cadillac have all signed up for the full season of WEC with LMH bids. Lamborghini is the newest entry, while Aston Martin is joining in 2025 to make the field even larger. Still, the 2024 entry list is one of the most stacked fields in endurance racing for a long time, and even LMGT3 has a healthy 18 entries across nine constructors with the return of a factory-backed McLaren 720S GT3 effort. The sole non-automaker entry in LMH is now Isotta Fraschini, as Vanwall and Glickenhaus are not entering for 2024. This is the list for LMH and LMGT3:

LMH

NumberTeamCar
2Cadillac RacingCadillac V-Series.R
5Porsche Penske MotorsportPorsche 963
6Porsche Penske MotorsportPorsche 963
7Toyota Gazoo RacingToyota GR010 HYBRID
8Toyota Gazoo RacingToyota GR010 HYBRID
11Isotta FraschiniIsotta Fraschini Tipo6-C
12Hertz Team JotaPorsche 963
15BMW M Team WRTBMW M Hybrid V8
20BMW M Team WRTBMW M Hybrid V8
35Alpine Endurance TeamAlpine A424
36Alpine Endurance TeamAlpine A424
38Hertz team JotaPorsche 963
50Ferrari AF CorseFerrari 499P
51Ferrari AF CorseFerrari 499P
63Lamborghini Iron LynxLamborghini SC63
83AF CorseFerrari 499P
93Peugeot TotalEnergiesPeugeot 9X8
94Peugeot TotalEnergiesPeugeot 9X8
99Proton CompetitionPorsche 963

LMGT3

NumberTeamCar
27Heart of Racing TeamAston Martin Vantage GT3
31Team WRTBMW M4 GT3
46Team WRTBMW M4 GT3
54Vista AF CorseFerrari 296 GT3
55Vista AF CorseFerrari 296 GT3
59United AutosportsMcLaren 720S GT3 Evo
60Iron LynxLamborghini Huracan GT3 EVO2
77Proton CompetitionFord Mustang GT3
78Akkodis ASP TeamLexus RC F GT3
81TF SportCorvette Z06 GT3.R
82TF SportCorvette Z06 GT3.R
85Iron DamesLamborghini Huracan GT3 EVO2
87Akkodis ASP TeamLexus RC F GT3
88Proton CompetitionFord Mustang GT3
91Manthey EMAPorsche 911 GT3 R
92Manthey PureRXcingPorsche 911 GT3 R
95United AutosportsMcLaren 720S GT3 Evo
777D’Station RacingAston Martin Vantage GT3

Longtime fans of endurance racing will know that strong prototype fields are a rarity, with short bursts of close competition breaking up plenty of single-make domination. At best, most hotly contested seasons are between two manufacturers. There was the Porsche-Toyota-Audi battle that spanned the 2010s; the Audi-versus-Peugeot era of the late 2000s; and the Audi’s dynastic streak with the R8 immediately before that. (The LMP, of course, not the road car.) Rarely have several manufacturers been in the running at once. You’d have to go back to Le Mans circa the waning years of the 20th century, when Mercedes, Audi, Nissan, Toyota, Porsche, and BMW all fought at the front with some of the most legendary race cars of all time. 

The first season of racing the LMH cars in 2023 was good, even if some teams weren’t happy with their balance of performance (BOP) penalties. That’s a given in motorsport, though, and many LMH cars showed genuine competitiveness, making the most recent 24 Hours of Le Mans a true classic. Now, there are even more players vying for overall glory. All that’s left is for the best to win.

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