Meet the World’s Craziest Porsche
This turbocharged time-attack build started life as a 968. It’s since been transformed into a beast-mode downforce machine.
Porsche builds can get pretty wild, but we honestly think the RP968 World Time Attack might be the craziest of them all. YouTuber Kyle.Engineers got the whole scoop on this car.
Australian racer Rod Pobestek started the build after visiting the 2014 World Time Attack Challenge. From there, things quickly got out of hand. With very few rules to limit development, Pobestek has spared no expense in building an aerodynamic wonder with a bespoke 1,500-horsepower twin-turbo engine loosely based on the original 3.0-liter mill.
Very little original Porsche 968 remains. Nearly every inch of the car has been modified to reduce weight and to increase downforce. The 2017 iteration also features considerable aero work by Dr. Sammy Diasinos, who usually works with Formula 1 cars.
The gigantic splitter and rear wing — both adjustable — stand out in the design. However, the enormous diffuser generates much of the downforce. The car’s floor was modified and cut away so that the diffuser’s front starts right behind the driver’s seat. Diasinos points out several other critical elements in the video, like the F1-style “shark fin,” barge boards in the front fender wells, and elements to direct the rear wheels’ turbulent aerodynamic weight.
Meet Thor, the RP968 Engine
The engine, however, could be one of the most incredible pieces in racing. Pobestek hired Sweden’s Elmer Racing to build an engine, called “Thor,” from as much billeted aluminum as they could. The end results are astonishing: 1,500 horsepower from a twin-turbo 4.0-liter four-cylinder that weighs only 233 pounds.
The rules state the engine must at least resemble a stock engine. The block is stock enough that a stock crankshaft will sit in it, but that’s about the extent of it. Billet and reinforced parts strengthen everything. As a result, Thor comes with an eye-popping six-figure price tag.
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Unfortunately, the engine arrived in Australia too late for testing and ultimately didn’t run in the car. Even with the old engine — a stock-block Porsche 968 3.0-liter with built internals — that “only” makes 850 horsepower, the RP968 finished second at WTAC. Driver Barton Mawer’s 1:21.485 came in just 0.514 behind the revered Hammerhead Nissan S13.
With the roaring Thor engine installed and likely some more aerodynamic upgrades, we wonder if the RP968 might threaten the overall lap record at Sydney. Nico Hulkenberg set that time, 1:19.142, in an A1GP car. It seems attainable within the next year or two.