Volvo reveals its V8 Supercar engine

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Volvo has confidently declared the engine powering its V8 Supercars Championship contender is on track to deliver competitive performance when it debuts in 2014.

A mock-up of the 5.0-litre V8 that will power the Volvo Polestar Racing S60 was unveiled this morning at the Sydney NRMA Motoring & Services 500, six months on from the announcement the Swedish manufacturer would enter the V8 Supercars Championship.

However, there was no news today on a new naming rights sponsor for the team, or who will be young gun Scott McLaughlin’s team-mate in the two-car squad next year.

The new factory Volvo team is an amalgamation of Garry Rogers Motorsport -- which is currently a privateer Holden team -- Volvo’s global motorsport partner Polestar Racing and Volvo Car Australia.

Polestar Racing is conducting the development of the engine in Sweden and is currently in the final stages of dyno tuning.

“By the end of this month we will have completion in test rigs and then Garry’s team is going it put it into the car mid to late January,” Volvo Car Corporation Motorsport Technical Director Martin Persson told motoring.com.au.

“The results from the test rigs so far, we are very happy with those. We think this is an excellent engine for Australian racing.”

The double overhead camshaft B8444S engine is unusual technically because its cylinder banks are splayed at a narrow 60-degree angle, rather than the 90 degrees usual for a V8.

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If Volvo does deliver a competitive package from the start of testing in January it will be step ahead of Nissan and Erebus AMG, which have both endured performance and fuel economy issues in their debut 2013 seasons.

Persson said he was confident the fuel economy of the engine would be competitive.

“Right now the tests show we won’t have any problems with fuel consumption. We are quite happy with the results as they are.

“But the engine has to be mounted in the car and run in the car, but we won’t have those results until next year.”

The first Volvo S60 V8 Supercar could have its first shakedown run this month still using a Chevrolet engine from GRM’s current Holden program, before swapping to the Volvo unit for homologation.

“We are looking at all sorts of options because we won’t have a proper engine for at least another month or more,” said Rogers. “So we just need to make sure the homologation process is right. We are looking at ways we can get the aero done and then homologate the car once we have the Volvo engine.

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Rogers said he was confident finding a replacement for naming-rights sponsor Fujitsu, which has announced it will not be renewing its deal beyond this year.

“We don’t have a sponsor as yet. We are talking to several parties but at this stage we don’t have anyone that has handed over the money.”

And a decision on whether Frenchman Alex Premat continues with the team or not, is still some time away.

“The driver situation is still being put together -- expect an announcement in the new year,” Volvo Car Australia Managing Director Matt Braid said.

Intriguingly, one person is convinced he knows who will be in the car is Premat himself: “I have a contract with Garry Rogers Motorsport until the end of 2014, so legally I am here and that is all I am going to say.”

By Bruce Newton, available at www.carsales.com.au

 

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