Venturi 600 LM #30 – Ixo

1993 Venturi 600 LM
Pilots: H. Poulain, B. Chouvain, J-L. Maury-Laribiere
Team: BBA Compétition
Race: DNC (GT1 class) at Le Mans in 1994
Ixo -  LMC 144 (diecast) 

Published 05/28/19

By 1992, top level racing was switching from prototypes to GT production cars. Venturi recognized that, and created the Venturi 500 LM specifically for the 24 Hours of Le Mans. It featured a steel chassis built around a central backbone, with a double wishbone suspension on all four corners. The engine was the PRV ZPJ4, a turbocharged V6 with 2975 cm³ that delivered 500 hp. The car, aimed at gentlemen drivers, had extensive support from Venturi. In the 24 Heures du Mans of 1993, seven 500 LM raced. Five of them finished, in 23rd, 25th, 27th, 28th and 29th. For the next season the car received aerodynamic improvements and a more powerful engine. The upgraded engine delivered 600 hp, and these new cars were named 600 LM.

When roof tiles become art work…

This #30 is chassis #LM006, and was one of the original six 500 LM of 1993. BBA Compétition bought the car in late 1993 and upgraded it to 600 LM specs for the 1994 race. Hervé Poulain was once again with BBA Compétition, and once again he wanted to race an art car. So first he got in touch with Franco-American artist Armand (Armand Pierre Fernandez), that agreed to paint BBA’s new ride. He then secured a sponsorship from Tuiles TBF, a French brand of hand-made roofing tiles. With the 600 LM as his canvas, Armand painted the car as if covered in roof tiles. Consequently, BBA’s 600 LM became the “TBF Tiles Car”.

I’m not a fan of brown cars, but I have to say that that looks VERY good.

The TBF Tiles Car, despite its artistic pedigree didn’t fair very well in the race. Though crossing the finish line, it only covered 221 laps, and did not classify. To classify it needed to cover at least 70% of the winner´s laps – in other words, 241 laps. Classified or not, it’s an art car, therefore HIGHLY interesting to me.

Ixo × Spark: with the colorful livery, Ixo easily takes the win.

I tried to buy the Spark version of this model twice, but something or other prevented me on both tries. So when an Ixo version showed up, what the hey… It’s a pretty nice model, finely detailed, but the whole livery is a wrap-around decal. In some sections it’s not totally smooth, and at close inspection you can notice it. But from 50 cm away it looks basically as good as a Spark. Yep, it’s really good. So for less than half the price of the Spark version, I think it was a neat acquisition.

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