Scuderia Cameron Glickenhaus has jumped the gun and become the first Le Mans hypercar class entrant to reveal its forthcoming racer – and bloody hell is it pretty. The new model – expected to be called the 007 and inspired by Alfa Romeo’s 1960s Berlinetta Aerodinamica Tecnica concepts – will use a 650hp twin-turbocharged 3.0-litre V6 combined with a kinetic energy recovery system, injecting a further 150hp. It’ll be followed by a homologated roadgoing variant, which firm boss James Glickenhaus has previously told PH will be almost completely identical to the competition machine barring slick tyres.
That’s because the American firm, which intends to field two factory cars in the 2021 24 Hours of Le Mans and offer more to customer squads, wants to emulate the event’s vintage years by using a race car that can be driven on the road. James Glickenhaus said to PH last year that he wants to drive one of the team’s racing cars to Le Mans, send it out to compete and then – assuming all goes to plan – “drive [it] to Paris for dinner” wearing the bugs and oil smudges of a daylong motor race. The car’s classic lines emphasise this old school approach and provide a stark contrast to the usual designs seen at the sharp end of France’s endurance race.
When it hits the track, SCG’s machine will face competition versions of the Aston Martin Valkyrie and Toyota GR Super Sport, and potentially a Lamborghini SC-18-based entrant as well, if the Italian firm goes ahead with plans company boss Stefano Domenicali is in strong support of. It’s not yet clear whether all of these new hypercar class machines will be ready for the grid at the opening World Endurance Championship round in September next year (when today’s LMP1 class is officially succeeded), or whether teams will focus on making it to the following June’s Le Mans race.
Either way, the FIA’s top category of sports car racing is set for a big shakeup – one that looks well placed to bring eclectic designs and close competition back to the front of the WEC field.
Previous story - 19.09.2019
Scuderia James Glickenhaus has previewed the hypercar endurance racer it’s developing for the 2021 Le Mans 24 Hours, showing that the motorsport machine will feature vertical wings and a taut engine cover, located over a massive rear diffuser. It also gives us a good idea of what the road version will look like as well, with Glickenhaus previously having told PH that the 007 will be so close to the road version that “the dream is to finish at Le Mans, change the wheels and tyres and drive the racing car to Paris for dinner”.
Although only a small section of the car has been shown, it’s likely the full body has been designed in concept form with just over a year to go until the new hypercar class supersedes today’s LMP1 category. The first World Endurance Championship season in which it could compete kicks off in September next year and is set to feature entrants from SCG, Aston Martin and Toyota, as well as Lamborghini - so long as brand boss Stefano Domenicali gets his way. The category’s regulations were recently finalised, meaning the confirmed manufacturers will soon be getting to work on physical versions of their hybrid hypercar racers, if they haven’t already.
All of the aforementioned companies are intending on basing their competition cars on existing models, with SCG using the layout of its proven 003C endurance car – which has won its class at the Nurburgring 24 Hours twice – to create its fastest racer yet. SCG intends to part-fund its hypercar programme by boosting the uptake of its GT3 and GT4 models with privateer teams, meaning the 2021 race at Le Mans ought to be just one of several to feature machinery from the American firm. If you want to know more about those ambitions, you can read our earlier story below.
Original story - 06.11.2018
Scuderia Cameron Glickenhaus is bidding to become a major motorsport player by ramping up its track presence and racing to win in the WEC's new top hypercar class. The American firm, headed by founder James Glickenhaus, has confirmed plans to enter up to three cars into the category, which will supersede today's LMP1 class from 2020, creating an all-new 007 model in the process that will also be offered in road-legal form.
Glickenhaus boss told PH that the racing 007 could use a General Motors-sourced engine coupled with hybrid electric power to drive the front axle, as per the class's regulations. He said a planned run of 25 road versions would be largely identical, in order to "take racing back to the old days", where teams ran racing cars that could be driven on the road.
"We'll build our road legal hypercar with the same engine architecture as the racer so it would use the same block," he said, before joking that the two versions would be so closely related that "the dream is to finish at Le Mans, change the wheels and tyres and drive the racing car to Paris for dinner!"
Glickenhaus admitted that the road car would probably have to trade the racing car's KERS hybrid system for a plug-in alternative. But he said this would enable the road car to run in pure electric mode and therefore "be driven in the centre of cities in the future."
To create its new model, SCG intends to build on the proven base of its 003C racer, which has won its class at the Nurburgring 24 Hours twice. Glickenhaus said "we've shown at the 'Ring [with the 003] that we build capable cars. We have the fastest car there - we have the most ballast and the least horsepower".
With the tighter regulations of the new WEC category (click here for more on them), which look set to keep annual team spending to around 20 million euros, SCG believes it can take on far more established manufacturers from the get-go. Glickenhaus said SCG's newly formed Glickenhaus North American Racing team "will be going for the win" at Le Mans and that it already has financial backing in place to ensure the project goes ahead.
There's more, too. The WEC campaign will form only a portion of SCG's racing ambitions, adding to the existing strategy to supply GT3 and GT4 cars to privateer racing teams. "We'll have factory racing and also racing cars with customers racing all over the world, such as 004C, 006C GT3 and GT4," explained Glickenhaus. He also confirmed intentions to maintain a front-running SCG presence on the Nurburgring's VLN and 24-hour race grids.
All this comes as part of Glickenhaus's dream to use age-old 'win on Sunday, sell on Monday' formula,. SCG was granted permission to build up to 325 cars a year on US soil that are exempt from crash regulations and don't need features such as airbags. But newly announced plans to purchase the buildings of a small airport in Danbury, Connecticut, could provide the company with the capacity to produce 750 cars per year. Glickenhaus confirmed SCG would "therefore be embarking to make some of [its] models fully crash legal".
"It's a step by step process, but with so much going on we're moving towards making SCG a real car company," he said.