1966 Porsche 906 #37 Pilots: V. Elford, B. Pon Team: Porsche System Engineering Race: 7th overall (1st in S 2.0) at Le Mans in 1967 Spark - S4743 (resin)
First seen on racetracks in 1966, the Porsche 906 (or Carrera 6) is a direct evolution of the 904. For Ferdinand Piech, head of Porsche’s racing department, the successor of the 904 should be light. With that in mind, the first order of business was the 904’s body. Porsche’s engineers stripped the steel of the body as best as they could, using fiberglass instead. They also extended that philosophy to the power plant, using the Typ 901/20 engine. The 901/20 was an air-cooled boxer-6 displacing 1991 cm³, with SOHC and two Weber carburetors. With a magnesium alloy crank case it was pretty light, and delivered 210 hp. In the end, the new 906 weighed 580 kg, about 110 kg lighter than the 904. Moreover, the 906 was the first Porsche tested in a wind tunnel. With a light and aerodynamic body it could reach 280 km/h, which was very good.
The racing career of the 906 was quite colorful. The car debuted in the 1966 24 Hours of Daytona, coming first in class (and sixth overall). That year, at La Sarthe, the 906 finished in 4-5-6-7, another class victory. It also won in its class at Monza, Sebring, Spa and Nürburgring. Yes, the car was a bonafide winner. This 906 #37 is chassis #906-154, which rolled out of Weissach in 1966. Its racing career is rather short, participating in only four races. Of these, its best result was the 24 Heures du Mans of 1967. In the able hands of Vic Elford and Ben Pon, 906 #37 came in seventh overall. And that translated to a win in the Sport 2.0 class, ahead of much bigger cars.
If my calculations are correct, with 906 #37 I now have all Porsche model types that raced at La Sarthe. Certainly, I don’t have all the variations, like Kurz and Langheck or coupe or spyder, though I think I have at least one of each model type. For instance, this 906 #37 is a short tail (“Kurz”), while the long tail (“Langheck”) only raced in 1966. Truth be told, in my opinion the 906LH looks cooler than the 906, therefore that is one more model I need. As if that list will ever end…🙄 Nonetheless, coming from Spark, 906 #37 is a duesy. As always, crisp details and terrific detail level overall. In addition, a class winner, so a fantastic acquisition for a Le Mans nut.