1994 Dauer 962 GT LM test car Spark - 43LM94 (resin)
Dauer 962 GT LM #36 (09/07/18):
Former racing driver Jochen Dauer founded Jochen Dauer Racing in 1987. They initially competed in European championships and occasional World Sports-Prototype Championship races, using the Porsche 962. With the end of sports prototype racing in the early 1990s, the team became Dauer Racing GmbH. The idea was to begin a limited production of road cars, including a road-legal version of the 962. The Dauer 962 Le Mans was revealed at the Frankfurt Motor Show in 1993 (4’14” video). Dauer made an outstanding car, since basically it was a street-legal race car. The model was a total success, and Porsche took notice.
With the end of Group C, the general interest in prototype racing was consequently in free fall. And that worried the Automobile Club de l’Ouest. So in 1993 ACO allowed the re-introduction of production-based grand tourer-style cars. However, the rules did not specify a minimum number of road-going examples for homologation. Clever Porsche didn’t miss the loophole created, and right after the Frankfurt Motor Show, approached Dauer. The idea was for Dauer to develop a racing version of their road car while Porsche would provide full factory support.
This racing version was called the Dauer 962 GT LM. Dauer used nearly the same engine as the racing 962, Porsche’s Type-935. It was a water-cooled 2994 cm³ flat-6 with two KKK turbochargers, rated at about 600 hp. The chassis was also the same one from the original 962, but the body was completely new. To make things lighter, a carbon fiber & Kevlar body was used. Basically, to make the car legal for Le Mans, only three modifications to the road car were necessary. It received narrower tires, a 120 l fuel tank and air restrictors to the engine (though without them the engine produced 730 hp!).
The Dauer 962 GT was an exclusive Le Mans effort, made specifically for La Sarthe. The idea was to have two cars for the race, so Dauer built three – chassis #GT001, #GT002 and #GT003. Though the project started in late 1993, by May of 1994 Dauer had only one car ready. Therefore, for the Le Mans test sessions on May 8th, only car #GT002 was ready. Hans J. Stuck was the pilot, and he finished in third in the GT1 class. For the actual race, in June, #GT002 finished in third place overall.
Spark reproduced in scale #GT002, as Stuck piloted it in May during the Le Mans test sessions. As expected, the model is top notch, very well replicated in 1:43. I thought it would be a nice acquisition for the Test Cars wing of the W-143 Garage, and was not disappointed.