Premiere time in the German GT Championship: New BMW and Audi GT3 cars on display in Hockenheim

Premiere time in the German GT Championship: New BMW and Audi GT3 cars on display in Hockenheim

12.10.2021: • BMW presents the newly-developed M4 GT3 • Audi introduces the second Evo variant of the R8 LMS • ADAC GT Masters teams and drivers are important factors in car development

•    BMW presents the newly-developed M4 GT3

•    Audi introduces the second Evo variant of the R8 LMS

•    ADAC GT Masters teams and drivers are important factors in car development

Looking to the future: The penultimate race weekend of the German GT Championship, in Hockenheim from 22nd to 24th October, will offer a glimpse into the 2022 season.

Next year, BMW and Audi will line up with new GT3 models, in which teams and drivers from the German GT Championship have played a key role in recent months. The new BMW M4 GT3 and Audi R8 LMS GT3 evo II will be presented to visitors in the open paddock at the ADAC GT Masters in Hockenheim.

Schubert Motorsport counting on the new BMW

After the Z4 and the M6, BMW will line up with its third GT3 car in 2022: the M4. The new race car is a completely new development, which has completed both an extensive test programme and its first race outings. Among those involved: BMW works driver Jesse Krohn (31/FIN).

“BMW started very early with the development of the M4 GT3. As a driver, you notice that immediately,” says the Finn, who drives the new car’s predecessor, the M6 GT3, alongside Nick Yelloly (30/GB) for Schubert Motorsport in this season’s ADAC GT Masters.

“The car is actually practically ready, but we are still looking at every detail to see whether it can be improved. For me, the car is a big step forward. We have taken the best elements of the M8 GTE from the WEC and the IMSA. The M4 is a real all-rounder and should be strong at all every circuit. I would be delighted to drive it in the ADAC GT Masters in 2022. I firmly believe that it will win races and be in contention for the title.”

Long-term BMW partner Schubert Motorsport plans to run two M4 GT3 in the German GT Championship in 2022. “We will receive the first car at the start of December,” says Marcel Schmidt, team manager and race engineer with the Oschersleben-based outfit.

“We want to run the M4 GT3 for the first time at the 24 Hours of Dubai, in order to gain experience and gather data. We intend to race in the ADAC GT Masters again in 2022, and are currently in discussions to this end. It looks like we will start with two cars. The first will be a Pro car with two works drivers, in order to get the maximum out of the car. In the second M4 GT3, we would like to field junior drivers, who can take the next step with our team and learn from the works drivers.”

Schmidt has high expectations of the new car:
“The feedback we received from our works drivers on the M4 GT3 has been very promising. We definitely have a lot of work to do over the winter, but I believe that BMW has taken a good step forward with the car and we will be able to go on the attack in the championship next year.”

Second evolution for Audi

For several years, Audi has been the manufacturer with the most cars in the field. As such, fans of the four rings can look forward to seeing many of the new evo version next year, as the current car is brought bang up-to-date with an upgrade kit.

The second generation of the Audi R8 has been starting in the series since 2016, during which time it has established itself as the most successful of the current crop of GT3 cars: its record reads 21 victories, two Driver titles and two Team titles. And the championship is currently led by two R8 drivers, in the form of Ricardo Feller (21/CH) and Christopher Mies (31/Düsseldorf, both Montaplast by Land-Motorsport).

 After a first evo variant in 2019, the second evolutionary stage now follows. Audi Sport has optimised the car in the areas of aerodynamics, engine characteristics, air conditioning, chassis and traction control.

As well as an extensive test programme, the Audi R8 LMS GT3 evo II has already completed its first outings in other race series. When the car made its debut in a 24-hour race in Barcelona, it was run by the Car Collection Motorsport team, which fields an Audi in the German GT Championship. The drivers included Audi sport driver Patric Niederhauser (30/CH, Phoenix Racing), the 2019 ADAC GT Masters champion.

“The new car is a significant development,” says the Swiss. “Particular value has been placed on making it more comfortable to drive. For example, the evo II is far more stable when entering corners. However, areas like the electronics, steering wheel and new air conditioning system also make driving more comfortable.”

Denis Ferlemann, team manager at Car Collection, is already planning for 202
2: “It is obviously a great honour for us to be involved in the development of the Audi R8 LMS GT3 evo II. We are pleased to be able to help Audi. We covered a lot of kilometres during the first race outing. You often learn more in that situation than when simply testing. The drivers provided some very positive feedback on the new car.

The handling is better, the aerodynamics are more stable – which is primarily down to the new rear wing. We want to equip our current R8 with the update kit in the winter, so that we can use it in Dubai in January. After that, the ADAC GT Masters will obviously also play an important role again in our planning for next season. We are currently working on various packages for 2022 and would like to run two Audi in this series.”

ADAC GT Masters 2021 calendar, subject to change

14.05. – 16.05.2021    Motorsport Arena Oschersleben
11.06. – 13.06.2021    Red Bull Ring (A)
09.07. – 11.07.2021 Circuit Zandvoort (NL)
10.09. – 12.09.2021    DEKRA Lausitzring
01.10. – 03.10.2021    Sachsenring
22.10. – 24.10.2021    Hockenheimring Baden-Württemberg
05.11. – 07.11.2021    Nürburgring

Oliver Runschke- photos BMW , AUDI


12.10.2021 / MaP

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