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Touring car racing excites fans in national series around the world. Europe has the World Touring Car Championship, Germany has DTM, Japan has Super GT and Australia has V8 Supercars, to name just a few of the standout examples. (Even NASCAR isn't far off the formula, although stock cars typically race on ovals where touring cars race on circuits.) The trouble is that a) not every country has its own touring car championship, and b) the cost of starting such a series or even entering a team can be prohibitively high. That's where the new Global Touring Cars framework comes in.

Launched by a coalition of veteran drivers and racing promoters, the Global Touring Car series aims to provide organizers and teams with a turn-key solution to get up and racing in their home country. The sanctioning body has got the rules and format all ironed out. They've got guidelines in place for finding sponsors. And they've got a business plan in place to make it financially viable – even lucrative – for those who want to take part.

They've even got the cars in place. GTC is based arund a custom chassis designed by veteran Australian racecar designer Paul Ceprnich. Up front sits a 500-horsepower V8, driving the rear wheels through a sequential gearbox with side-exit exhausts. All the cars will be mechanically identical, and they're designed to fit a variety of body panels – like the wide-body Ford Focus sedan pictured here.

The first national series is kicking off later this year in South Africa, and once other series are set up in other countries, there's even talk of a World Cup to let the top performers from each series face off for top honors. The formula strikes us as interesting, though only time will tell if it manages to catch on.



read press release/more photos: autoblog.com/2014/01/23/global-touring-cars-500hp-v8-ford-focus-sedan-official/

...:cool:
 

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Would love to see more American circuit racing. Hope the GTC is a success.
 
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