PALMETTO, Fla. – Even though the first race oft the 2016 Cooper Tires USF2000 Championship Powered by Mazda season is still one week away, it’s never too soon to begin looking toward the future.
Dan Andersen, owner and CEO of Andersen Promotions, has announced an improved deal on pricing for the state-of-the-art, carbon-chassis Tatuus USF-17 which will be introduced for 2017. In addition, thanks to the assistance of a variety of series partners, the first 17 orders for the new car will receive a $2,000 discount on the chassis/engine package, plus one free set of Cooper rain tires valued at $1,045.
USF2000 represents the first step on the Mazda Road to Indy open-wheel development ladder, which provides a clearly defined path for teams and drivers – with scholarship prizes at every level – to assist in the progression from karting through USF2000, the Pro Mazda Championship Presented by Cooper Tires and Indy Lights Presented by Cooper Tires to the Verizon IndyCar Series and the Indianapolis 500. The Tatuus USF-17 will be the series’ standard for at least the next five years and will supersede the venerable Van Diemen chassis which has formed the backbone of the series since 1999.
The USF-17 monocoque chassis has been enhanced over typical F4 designs and meets current FIA safety standards, including side impact panels, front and rear impact structures, HANS-compliant head restraint, front and rear wheel tethers, upgraded uprights, and upgraded front bulkhead structure for USA specific oval racing circuits.
Unique USF2000 sidepods and engine cover along with USF2000 specific front and rear wing end plates, nose cone and front cover combine to form an aero package that includes carbon composite wings with adjustable twin-element rear wing and a carbon composite diffuser.
In addition to the previously announced PFC four-piston brake package, Cosworth Omega L2 Plus data system with Cosworth CFW 277 steering wheel (complete with integrated dash and gear change paddles) and a Magneti Marelli electronic gear shift system, the entire package, priced at $51,800, now includes one set of forged aluminum American Racing Technomesh wheels and a stainless steel exhaust system.
The USF-17 will utilize Dynamic 1640 three-way dampers.
“We are delighted to be able to expand the included components from the package that was originally announced at the PRI show last December,” said Andersen. “While we are excited about the prospects for the current season, we are equally enthusiastic about offering our competitors such an advanced equipment package in 2017.”
Elite Engines will continue as the builder of the series power plants, offering several different options. The current Generation 1 Mazda MZR race engine can be upgraded to the Generation 2 spec, which will utilize “drive by wire” technology in the USF-17. Complete new Generation 2 engines will also be offered, and the Mazda engine package will utilize a Cosworth SQ6 ECU/GCU management unit including integrated engine and gearshift control systems.
Testing of the prototype, which will be unveiled at a special ceremony at Indianapolis Motor Speedway on the day before the 100th Indianapolis 500, will commence in June at both road course and oval circuits.