After a long period of conjecture as to who would be selected to provide the coveted TOCA control engine in the BTCC, we finally have the answer. M-Sport, the group behind Ford’s WRC programme and Bentley’s GT3 programme have been selected to provide the TOCA control engine.
M-Sports announcement comes amid news that they will also cancel their Intercontinental GT Challenge programme with Bentley with immediate effect, this piece of news breaking shortly after the TOCA engine deal being announced.
M-Sport’s new engine will compete from 2022-2026, which will also be the first year of the new BTCC Hybrid regulations. The next generation engine will be developed over the next 12 months and will see first track running in 2021.
The significance of the TOCA engine is huge, for the 2020 season, just over half the grid uses a TOCA control engine; making it a real financial boon for whoever gets awarded the contract. It will be some time until the specification of the new engine is released, though it is likely to be a similar style of engine which we have had since 2012. Namely, a 2.0 litre four cylinder turbo power plant.
Current TOCA control engine manufacturer Swindon Powertrain will continue until the close of the 2021 season. Swindon has provided the TOCA engine in two engine cycles, 2012-2016 & 2017-2021.
M-Sport will also be working in close collaboration with Cosworth, who will provide the new regulation hybrid system to all BTCC teams from 2022 onwards, which will likely provide privateer teams with a competitive cost-effective base for the 2022 season.
The BTCC season will get underway at Donington Park on the weekend of August 1st-2nd, providing there are no unexpected changes in the current Covid19 situation in the UK.