Corvette Le Mans racer Oliver Gavin has urged rule makers to ensure that the move toward green technology does not reduce the noise appeal of sports car racing.
The dramatic engine note of the Corvette GT cars has made them a fan favorite, whereas the diesel-powered generation of works LMP1 cars were significantly quieter. Gavin fears sports car racing's appeal will be reduced if loud cars like the Corvette become a thing of the past.
"You've got to have the noise and that experience. People need to see the cars going quickly, but also hear the cars," he said at the AUTOSPORT International motorsports show. "If everything was silent, I think a lot of people would be switching off."
He underlined that he welcomed motorsport's environmental push, but that the entertainment factor had to be considered in tandem.
"It has to be dovetailed together," said Gavin. "There's obviously the green message out there and all these systems and renewable fuels, and obviously the ACO is going in that direction.
"But one thing I think we have to be very careful of is that people come along to these races to experience it. They want to see the cars, hear them and almost taste it. That noise is one of those things that people engage with."