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Legends at the Porsche Museum: The Unique 911 GT1

Submitted by on April 14, 2021

By Marcel Hundscheid / Speed-O-Graphica

Due to the COVID19 limitations around the world, historic racing events are very limited at the moment. So, our European correspondent Marcel Hundscheid decided last year to pay the Porsche museum in Stuttgart a visit. In this third episode we feature the unique Porsche 911 GT1, a car that was specially created to compete in the GT1 class of sportscar racing.

Porsche’s 962 was once the car to beat in sportscar racing, but when McLaren entered their voracious F1 GTR, the good old 962 started to feel a little long in the tooth. In just six weeks and with a departure from the 911’s iconic rear-engined layout, Porsche engineer Norbert Singer created the mid-engined 911 GT1.

Pictured above is one of three works cars, Porsche 911 GT1-98 #003 driven by Allan McNish, Yannick Dalmas and Stephane Ortelli.

Fitted with carbon brakes and a 3.2 liter flat-six engine mid-mounted and equipped with twin KKK turbochargers, the 911 GT1 could put out 592 hp.

Singer used the steel front end from the 993 (internal designation of the 911) and the rear from the 962. Porsche planned to enter this car in the GT1 subclass of the FIA ​​GT Championship, which started in 1997. However, before they could unleash their new weapon upon the series, they had to create a street legal version first.

The result was a truly remarkable design, and after an extensive testing programme throughout the first five months of 1996, Porsche entered two works cars in the Le Mans 24 Hours. Both of the cars crossed the finish line, claiming first and second in the Le Mans GT1 class and second and third overall. The 911 GT1 was followed by the 911 GT1 Evo in 1998. Porsche built six racing chassis (numbered 001-006) and 22 chassis for the streets. Eight additional customer chassis were built (396001-396023).

Pictured below is one of the two Zakspeed Racing Porsche 911 GT1-98 #004 driven by Michael Bartels and Armin Hahne. #005 was the second car used by Zakspeed Racing.

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