Ever since the 2017 IndyCar season ended on Sunday, September 17th, 2017, series competition president Jay Frye has been visiting a number of engine manufacturers in talks of joining the series alongside current engine suppliers Chevrolet and Honda, including some that may have been European manufacturers.
Since the 2012 season, teams within the series have either used Chevrolet or Honda engines.
However, the one exception to this was the 2012 season when a few teams used Lotus engines before most of them quickly turned to the other two suppliers given the lack of speed that the Lotus engines had.
Lotus has not been in the series since, and that is not surprising whatsoever.
Before the 2012 season, all teams used Honda engines dating back to the 2006 season except in the Long Beach race in 2008 when several teams used Cosworth engines.
However, that race took place on the same day as the Motegi race, which was where most of the series regulars were competing.
Aside of those two instances discussed above, the last time an engine supplier other than Chevrolet or Honda was in IndyCar was back in the 2005 season, which was Toyota’s final season in the sport.
They have not returned since.
The 2005 season was also Chevrolet’s final season in the sport before they made their return in the 2012 season when the new DW12 chassis was introduced.
As referenced above, aside of Lotus’ short stint in the sport in 2012, the teams in the series have either been powered by Chevrolet or Honda engines ever since the former returned to the series.
But that could change within the next few seasons.
Here is what Jay Frye told about the prospects of getting a third engine manufacturer to the sport.
“I think the topic of bringing in a third manufacturer does have some momentum behind it. Since the season ended, we’ve organized meetings with some prospects and had some follow-up meetings with manufacturers we’d met with before.
The good news is they’re paying attention to what we’re doing and have a lot of curiosity in what we’re doing.”