Several weeks ago, Acrua gave a glimpse on their latest prototype race car called the ARX-05. Set to partake at next year's IMSA WeatherTech Sports Car Championship,the all-new prototype features a radical-looking exterior that is powered by a modified V6 production engine.
Now, the company has officially taken the covers off the ARX-05 at the 2017 The Quail, A Motorsports Gathering. Short for 'Acura Racing eXperimental, generation 5', it is the brand's latest line of prototype endurance racers that succeeds the previous ARX-04 and older models.
“At Acura, Precision Crafted Performance is at the heart of everything we do. Whether it is our production cars or a prototype race car, if you want to be a performance brand you need to perform,” said Jon Ikeda, Acura vice president and general manager.
Based on the successful ORECA 07 platform (which was also used by Jackie Chan DC Racing at 24 Hours of Le Mans), the ARX-05's chassis is made from lightweight carbon fiber. It also features double wishbone suspension all around, ventilated carbon ceramic disc brakes with six-pot calipers and a rubber fuel tank.
The body, on the other hand, was designed by a team led by Acura Global Creative Director Dave Marek. Up front, the ARX-05 features the brand's signature 'Jewel Headlights' which are then flanked by the brightly-colored cannards. Moreover, the ARX-05 comes with long flowing lines and muscular arches that provide better downforce and aerodynamics. Marek added that they had to go through several sketches before selecting a few which made the final cut for aerodynamic and wind testing
Powering Acura's new prototype race car is a twin-turbo AR35TT V6 engine. It is based off the 'J35' production V6 which also powers several Acura models like the MDX, RDX, TLX and RLX. The race-proven engine has powered previous Acura race cars for the past few years in different racing categories and championships. These include 12 Hours of Sebring (2011 – 2013), 24 Hours of Le Mans and LMP2 World Endurance Championship (2012) and American Le Mans Series LMP2 (2012 – 2013) as such.
“Right from the start, Acura has raced – and done so successfully. We've won with the Acura Integra Type R, the RSX, the first-generation NSX and with the Le Mans prototypes. Most recently, we've won with the new Acura NSX GT3. The ARX-05 is our fifth-generation prototype, and we expect great things from our partnership with Team Penske,” said Art St. Cyr, president of Honda Performance Division (HPD) and Acura Motorsports.
The ARX-05 will be making its racing debut come January 2018 at the season-opening Rolex 24 in Daytona. The legendary Team Penske will be fielding the Acura prototypes while one of the race cars will be driven by Juan Pablo Montoya along with sports car champion Dane Cameron.