TOCA awards BTCC hybrid contract to Cosworth Electronics

TOCA awards BTCC hybrid contract to Cosworth Electronics

BTCC race start at Thruxton
Photo: PSP Images

British Touring Car Championship organiser TOCA has awarded the contract for the design, supply and servicing of the BTCC Hybrid system, to be introduced for the 2022 season, to Cosworth Electronics.

TOCA has also confirmed that the new hybrid system will not be introduced in time for the 2021 season, which had originally been mooted as an option to bring forward the implementation.

Coswroth Electronics has been awarded the contract after a round of tenders for the “very challenging specifications” put out by TOCA, in particular relating to the packaging, performance and low-cost requirements.

When the system is in place, drivers will be able to use the additional hybrid power for a ‘push-to-pass’ system, introducing new attacking and defending strategies during a race.

According to TOCA, “performance simulations undertaken by Cosworth show that the most significant gains will be achieved at the low engine RPM ranges; the hybrid power burst will bring the engine up into the turbo ‘window’ more quickly.

“This will provide drivers deploying the system the chance to pull alongside or gain ground on the opposition.”

TOCA cites a simulation using the Silverstone Circuit, in which two cars, one with and one without hybrid power, accelerating out of Copse Corner would see the hybrid car emerge around 8 m ahead before the next braking zone.

Drivers will have a steering wheel mounted button to deploy the hybrid power once full traction has been achieved, with the system deactivating on a second button press, the use of the brakes, reaching a time or energy limit or a reduction in throttle pressure or sudden acceleration or deceleration.

Before the deployment of the system, “rigorous testing and simulations will refine the more exact nature of the driver-selectable hybrid power delivery (i.e. how many seconds per lap, when/how it can be used etc.) as well as configuring the varying amounts of regeneration and hybrid power that will be used to replace the current success ballast system.”

The hybrid system will add weight to the existing cars, taking the total weight to around 10 kg below the maximum success ballast level used (75 kg) before the current season saw weights reduced. The hybrid system will replace the current ballast system when it is deployed, with top drivers receiving reduced hybrid boost in order to level the playing field.

The system will be available on lease from TOCA for an annual cost of £20,500 (or £2,050 per event).

2022 BTCC – Cosworth Hybrid system (Technical Overview)

‘P2 off-axis’ hybrid system60v high power – low volt system
Electric motor integrates within modified current BTCC Xtrac gearbox
Separate custom hybrid motor cooling unit
Utilising the best power-to-weight hybrid motor currently available
Compact size and weight: 7.5 kg
Little disruption to current NGTC specification
Calibrated and driver-adjustable regeneration

Bespoke Delta Motorsport 60v battery pack

Battery weight: 20 kg – housed within IP67 rated isolated composite safety cell
Incorporated battery coolant system
Quick release connectors
Easy removal and replacement – less than 10 minutes
Charging via 240v wall socket – one hour full charge time
Replaces current ballast box

Modifications required to current car

Updated gearbox case (not all internals) to incorporate electric motor
Additional electronic connections
Changes to some intercooler locations and pipes.
Upgraded Cosworth ‘Antares’ electronics suite
Total fully installed system weight approx. 64 kg – including electric motor, battery, controllers, looms, pumps, pipes, cables, fluids etc.

Hybrid Performance

Push to pass or defend – power gain of approx. 40+ bhp
Maximum of 15 seconds per lap – available after first lap
No limit on number of uses per lap – can only be used when full traction
Alternative calibrations for wet track conditions
Cars will drive the length of the pit lane on full electric power
Configurable percentages of hybrid output/regeneration rate – this will replace the use of success ballast weights
On-car LED light system to display hybrid deployment
Hybrid power is additional to the current BTCC 2 litre turbo engine power – there is no reduction to either its power output…. or exhaust note

Comprehensive annual lease scheme

The BTCC – Cosworth Hybrid System annual lease fee of £20,500 (i.e. £2,050 per event) includes:

Complete electric hybrid motor
Complete bespoke battery pack
Hybrid cooling hardware
Hybrid power and control looms
Car installation sign-off and systems check
At-event Cosworth hybrid engineer support
Full annual service/maintenance/refurbishment
Systems and safety training