GRAND-AM Announces Plans For New Rolex Series Class

GX Class Expected To Attract Variety Of Production-Based Entries; Designed to Showcase Advanced/Clean Technologies For Latest Cars

May 31, 2012, 13:45 ET from GRAND-AM Road Racing

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla., May 31, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Responding to burgeoning interest from a variety of manufacturers, GRAND-AM Road Racing today announced plans to add a third class to compete in the Rolex Sports Car Series, beginning with the 2013 season-opening Rolex 24 At Daytona.

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The new class, to be called "GX," will join the series' headlining Daytona Prototype (DP) and the production-based Grand Touring (GT) classes. The models – and some manufacturers – will be unique to GX.

The production-based GX competition will feature cars and technologies not currently involved in the Rolex Series. Rules are being developed to allow for the exploration of a wide variety of alternative technologies and alternative fuels. This could include turbocharged engines; fuels other than gasoline, such as clean diesels; and hybrid powertrains.

The class will be developed with performance levels that complement the current DP and GT classes. No changes to GT performance levels are expected.

Announcements regarding specific manufacturer participation in GX competition are expected in the near future.

"A number of OEMs have expressed their desire to field cars that wouldn't fit within our current two-class structure, so it makes good sense for us to find a way to accommodate those desires and in the process make something that's already great – the Rolex Series – even better," said GRAND-AM President and CEO Ed Bennett.

"When there are manufacturers looking to compete, we need to find a model that works to include them in the Rolex Series. It's good for the fans, providing another whole group of exciting cars they can relate to. And the fact that the GX class will get to debut at the Rolex 24 just adds to the anticipation and excitement."

The 2012 Rolex Series season continues Saturday with the Chevrolet GRAND-AM Detroit 200 at Belle Isle presented by Metro Detroit Chevy Dealers – part of the overall Chevrolet Detroit Belle Isle Grand Prix weekend. The 5 p.m. (ET) race will be broadcast live by SPEED and MRN.