2003 Porsche Carrera GT
Minichamps - 400062632 (diecast)
The history of the Carrera GT began with Porsche’s 911 GT1 and LMP1-98 racing cars. Because of the rule changes promoted by FIA and ACO in 1998, both projects became useless. Porsche then started working on a new Le Mans car for 1999. Unfortunately, right after the first prototype was ready, Stuttgart cancelled the project. At the time Porsche was committed to the new Cayenne SUV with involvement from Volkswagen and Audi, and could not tackle both projects. There’s also speculation that VW-Audi chairman Ferdinand Piëch didn’t want inhouse competition for Audi’s R8 in 2004. So the new race car got the axe and Porsche got into the SUV business. Yay.
However, Porsche didn’t totally terminate the project, and built a concept car for the 2000 Paris Motor Show. The idea was mainly an attempt to draw attention to their display, and the car was a tremendous success. With the huge interest in the concept and the cash influx produced by the Cayenne, the project became viable. So production of the new Carrera GT began in the end of 2003.
The chassis of the Carrera GT is a carbon fiber central tub connected to the front in a large unitized molded assembly. For the rear there’s a separate structure that supports the power train and rear suspension. As the powerhouse Porsche used the 980/01 engine. It’s a 5733 cm³ V10 with DOHC and 40 valves, rated at 604 hp. That’s enough to go from naught to 100 km/h in just 3.5 seconds. Top speed is electronically limited to 328 km/h. Porsche produced the car from 2003 to 2007, in a total of 1270 units.
It was a true supercar, the first one from Stuttgart since the 959. Even though I’m more a 911 kind of guy, I just couldn’t leave my collection without a Carrera GT. So I chose this one from Minichamps, and I admit it’s a nifty model. Not as good as their more current models but in the end very nice. Another “honest Minichamps”.