A selection of Group C endurance racers with ground effect aerodynamics will be displayed on the Ascott Collection stand during the 2018 Retromobile show.
Retromobile has always offered a very high quality selection of cars in its Paris halls, and this year’s event – running on 7-11 February – is likely to continue the tradition. The French classic competition car brokerage firm, Ascott Collection, has announce this year’s display, which focuses on ground effect-era endurance racers. Here’s a round-up of what you will be able to see:
1981 Lola T600
First up is a ground effect prototype that came before the Group C era, the 1981 Lola T600. Entered in the 1981 Le Mans 24 Hours – under Group 6 regulations requiring an open roof – the car’s development was inspired by the Lotus 18, and was the work of the young French aerodynamic engineer, Max Sardou.
1985 March Porsche 85G
Endurance racing in the USA’s GTP category stuck relatively close to Group C regulations, and could even be entered along side Group C at Le Mans. The 1985 March Porsche 98G was developed by Max Sardou and Adrian Newey, and it went on to win its class at Le Mans.
1988 Toyota 88C
While this Toyota failed to make much of a mark at Le Mans, it was actually quite successful in various races in Japan, and the USA. This example hasn’t been seen on public display for some years.
1989 Spice SE89 Cosworth
The Group C Junior category allowed independent manufacturers to compete with much lower costs, with lighter weight prototypes. Most were powered by the famous V8 Cosworth engine used in Formula 1, and the most successful Group C Junior cars were run by Gordon Spice.
1990 Nissan NPT 90
By 1990, ground effects had reached their peak, and this Nissan combined several tons of downforce with interesting styling. It performed well in the USA.
1988 Porsche 962
According to Ascott: ‘It would be unthinkable to present a selection of endurance cars with ground effect without featuring a Porsche 962’. As one of the most important Group C racers of all time, this genuine Porsche chassis ‘962-131’ completes this selection of endurance racers.