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It's our first look at next year’s Porsche 911 RSR

Le Mans racers be warned: Porsche has started work on its 2017 GTE entry

We’re barely a third of the way through 2016, but Porsche has already begun testing the car it hopes will deliver victory in endurance races across the globe next year.

Testing has already taken place at Porsche’s Weissach test centre - a place we can only imagine to be fun to work at - with several of the German carmaker’s works drivers putting the new model through its paces.

“It is definitely unusual to put several drivers behind the wheel at a rollout,” said Marco Ujhasi, who oversees Porsche’s GT Works Motorsport. “But since all of our works drivers are involved in the development of the new car, the ones who could fit it into their schedules came to Weissach and turned a couple of laps.”

There are no figures for us to go on just yet, although no doubt Porsche will be looking to make performance gains on the current 464bhp, flat-six setup.

The 911 RSR will now go through a development programme that takes in several circuits around the globe, before the fully-refined machine makes its debut at the Daytona 24 hours in January 2017.

“The race debut of a completely new vehicle at a 24-hour race is a big challenge,” explained Head of Porsche Motorsport, Dr Frank-Steffen Walliser. “But we are right on schedule.”

As well as competing at Daytona, the new car will be eligible for the GTLM class of the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship, and will mark Porsche’s works return in the GTE bracket of the World Endurance Championship in 2017. So youll see these tearing round Le Mans next year.

It can also compete in the Nürburgring 24, a venue where a new TGTV presenter Sabine Schmitz has proven rather handy in the old 911 GT3 R. The new version has a lot to live up to…

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