First off, a race car is a highly strung, precise piece of equipment, which is why they usually begin life as a brand new showroom model. Whether Danish company Hartmann Racing were in the mood for a challenge, or simply wanted a unique way to dispose of their championship-winning driver, James Thompson, is unclear. Clearly we’re kidding, but you get the point.
For them to rebuild a race car from the mangled wreck that once resembled their European Touring Car Cup Honda Accord is clearly not the norm. Nevertheless, they have succeeded in resurrecting the car in a period of no less than 2 months or 600 man hours - an achievement they can definitely be proud of.
“I did feel convinced that the car had had driven its last metres as a racing car,” admitted team owner Hans Hartmann. “It had been a really big bang. Afterwards the data logging equipment told us that the car had reached a speed of 154 km/h when it hit the two stationary vehicles. But the car’s power box, which we have developed and which has been used by Porsche in their LMP2 car, soon realized that it was unusual for a racing car to go that sideways over such a long distance, so it automatically cut off the fuel supply to the engine and all the electrics and thus prevented even bigger damage.”
Now the car is ready for its next challenge, the third and final round of FIA’s European Touring Car Cup that will be run on October 16th-17th at Franciacorta in Italy, where James Thompson will defend his current championship lead. He’s a brave man for getting behind the wheel of a rebuild such as this, never mind racing it to the limit and beyond!