Think about a racing workforce from a rustic not significantly acknowledged for motorsport prowess in campaigning sedans identified globally for being boxy however good, as a Dudley Moore character so eloquently put it. An uphill battle, for certain.
This story initially appeared in Quantity 13 of Highway & Monitor.
JOIN TRACK CLUB BY R&T FOR MORE EXCLUSIVE STORIES
However, bless their Swedish coronary heart, Polestar reached the mountaintop and ran the automobiles with such success that Volvo made the workforce an official “efficiency companion” in 2009. Then, in 2015, Volvo purchased Polestar outright. Polestar lived each racing firm’s dream, solely to show into an EV model.
However Polestar Racing was not shut down. It went on to win beneath a brand new moniker, Cyan Racing, named after the gorgeous shade of blue lengthy related to quick Volvo automobiles. The workforce was profitable in World Touring Automotive Cup racing, profitable titles in 2020 and 2021 (however not with Volvos).
Now the recognition of restored, race-engineered, road-going classics presents Cyan a brand new alternative for enjoyable and revenue. On this case, a carbon-filled sports activities automobile primarily based on probably the most fashionable Volvo in historical past: the P1800 coupe.
Certain, Singer and its reworked 911s get a number of credit score for setting developments within the excessive finish of the resto mod world. Now, along with the acquainted modernized muscle automobiles, there are revived, carbon-clad automobiles like a $400,000 Constructed by Legends Mines Nissan Skyline GT-R and a $500,000 Lancia Delta Integrale from Automobili Amos. Even the OEM discovered learn how to faucet into the deep pockets of bored multi-millionaires who’ve run out of impressed analog machines to pay seven figures for. Jaguar “discontinued” a collection of light-weight E-types, Aston Martin has “reissued” the DB5, and Bentley presents “continuation collection” blowers.
The Cyan Racing P1800 I drove prices $700,000, a loopy sum of money for a Volvo. However a collection construct hardly ever has this degree of element. And there aren’t many sixties Volvos left. Cyan retains a few of the authentic metal chassis, windshield wipers, vent controls and hood launch. That is all. Each different element has been redesigned or changed.
Eye-opening metrics embody a curb weight that rivals the second-generation Lotus Elise — simply 2,180 kilos — with the type of energy and revs that make Porsche homeowners take discover: 336 lb-ft of torque at 6,000 rpm, 420 hp at 7,000 rpm, and a redline means up at 7700. The engine is a contemporary 2.0-liter inline-four sourced from a Volvo S60 race automobile and mated to a dogleg five-speed Holinger transmission with the perfect notches this aspect of an eighties Ferrari. The carbon fiber driveshaft hyperlinks to an impartial rear suspension (the unique P1800 had a stable axle) with consumer selectable closing drive ratios relying on the mission. The engine bay is beautiful, with a vintage-style area for lengthy runners, particular person throttle our bodies and an equally lengthy head on show. We’re certain there are wires in there someplace, however you may’t see them.
The carbon fiber physique is ingeniously bonded to the metal chassis for rigidity, with the greenhouse moved again a number of inches for a extra upright stance and flared wheel arches to accommodate meaty 18-inch cast, center-locking wheels. You want large wheels to clear the enormous 14-inch AP Racing brakes. The window glass is model new. The chrome frames and door handles are billet. A motorsport-grade gasoline cell eats up the trunk; it would as properly, because the stem has no braces to carry it ajar. Ditto the impossibly gentle doorways: In the event that they lack locking braces, they will not keep open on their very own.
The inside is minimalist within the charming means solely Swedes can pull off. The carbon fiber bucket seats are off the shelf and, just like the door panels, properly trimmed in felt, an odd however excellent materials alternative. Climbing out and in of the leather-wrapped titanium bar is the least elegant a part of the equipment. I might say they need to skip the door bars, however contemplating how the carbon door would fare as a crash design, I am going to let that thought go. Whereas the gauges and switches evoke the unique P1800, they’re all powerful gears and stable, milled billet pulls. The seating place wasn’t set for me, so the Momo Prototipo steering wheel sadly blocked helpful data on the attractive gauges.
The lightness is instantly obvious. Every management has the least quantity of weight behind it so you realize it is there. Many occasions, when somebody builds a really gentle automobile, a hydraulic clutch or energy steering is eradicated within the title of “purity”, leading to a automobile that requires a number of bodily effort to drive. The P1800 Cyan makes use of these subtleties to emphasise lightness, not remind you of sacrifices. It is amazingly fast, with a powerband that builds all the way in which to redline. Its harmonious, classic exhaust observe is accompanied by extra fashionable turbo spool and wastegate sounds. Whereas fashionable turbocharged engines are inclined to peak early after which drop off, this factor builds like a high-strung six. The shifter feels completely crisp. The clutch pedal isn’t any tougher to function than a contemporary hatchback. The guide brakes are heavier than a traditional automobile however removed from a exercise. And the pedal distance is ideal.
The P1800 Cyan’s trip is not too stiff. It has only a trace of physique roll, and turn-in is razor sharp. The corporate’s racing expertise shines via.
Cyan says it optimized this specific automobile for canyoning, which explains its dartiness on the freeway. The corporate can tailor a automobile’s configuration to swimsuit any buyer, and it would not must be a long-term dedication. Every part might be modified at any time, though I might advocate leaving the changes to professionals. Whereas I is probably not monitoring the P1800, it appears as much as the duty. Even on a blazing summer season day at altitude, the P1800 remained cool, composed and really highly effective.
My solely criticism: The usage of electrical energy steering robs the automobile of some highway really feel. Mixed with an aggressive wheel setup (little question to facilitate immediate engagement), the dearth of really feel meets resistance to self-centering leaving a nook. It is not an issue within the canyons, the place it is a pleasure to work the wheel, nevertheless it’s somewhat annoying on the open sweepers of the Pacific Coast Freeway. I might in all probability set mine up for cruising and be completely proud of the dealing with outcomes.
I am usually postpone by the phrase “traditional appears and fashionable efficiency”, however Cyan truly delivers. The P1800 is superb. It is quick. And it sings an thrilling music. I might take one on an extended drive if I may, however there’s that gasoline cell that takes up the entire trunk. This results in my solely request: Make mine a P1800ES cart, please.
#P1800 #Cyan #worlds #coolest #Volvo