James Glickenhaus Wants To Race The SCG 003 At Le Mans
Jim Glickenhaus’ 2016 SCG 003 is an incredible car. Built from the ground up from carbon fiber and other lightweight materials, the SCG 003 is arguably the pinnacle of modern supercars, although it doesn’t have the brand cachet of similar products from Ferrari, Lamborghini or McLaren. In fact, "similar" isn’t the word I should be using here, because the SCG 003 and the LaFerrari (random pick) have nothing in common besides the market they compete in. Glickenhaus designed the SCG 003 like no one else does today. It’s the type of supercar you can drive to the track and turn into a full-fledged racer by changing the rear wing, the diffuser, and the splitter before hitting the course.
If there’s one supercar the SCG 003 can be compared to, that would have to be the McLaren F1, which won the 24 Hours of Le Mans with only minor changes from the standard road car.
There are plenty of reasons why Jim designed the car this way, and one of them is that he likes to race. The SCG 003 already made its track debut in a VLN race at Nurburgring, but was black-flagged for being too cool... er... too loud, and Glickenhaus now plans to race it at the 24 Hours of Nurburgring.
As if that’s not cool enough, Glickenhaus wants to take things up a notch and tackle the greatest endurance event of all: the 24 Hours of Le Mans. That may sound a bit wild given the car isn’t homologated as an outright GT3, but Jim says it’s possible.
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Although the SCG 003 can’t be homologated for the GT3 class, which would require production of 1,000 units, Glickenhaus will continue to race it under GT3 specs but as an experimental car, just like he did in the car’s first VLN race in the SP-X category. "We’re not looking to come first overall or win GT. We don’t care; let someone else take the trophy home. We just want to race," Jim told Autocar. However, the plan for Le Mans is entirely different.
"I’ve spoken to the Automobile Club de l’Ouest and they’ve told me the other manufacturers will never let me run as a GT car. So they told me to turn it into an LMP prototype. Now, financially I’ve been lucky, but not that lucky. I don’t have a $500 million budget. But the ACO said, ‘Build a non-hybrid evolution of the car and we will let you run lighter and give you more power. We’re not saying we’re going to let you win, but we’d love to see you competitive.’" said Glickenhaus.
So will he build a non-hybrid LMP prototype for the French event? You bet, but don’t get your hopes up on this new race car hitting the track too soon. Jim says it won’t happen sooner than 2017, adding that this project will only come to fruition if he manages to sell the standard SCG 003 to the "15 serious people" that went to the 2015 Geneva Motor Show to see it. If I can sell that number of cars, or even close, we will be on the grid at Le Mans in 2017."
I obviously can’t afford an SCG 003, but I sure hope Scuderia Glickenhaus gets just enough customers to start developing the LMP car as soon as possible.
Why it matters
In a world dominated by supercars that are way too fancy to hit the track as a proper race car, the SCG 003 is a diamond in the rough. Yeah, I know most automakers brag about using all sorts of motorsport- and F1-inspired technology in their cars, but none of them have what it takes to compete against the SCG 003. This supercar is unique, and seeing it race at the Circuit de la Sarthe would be a great opportunity for racing enthusiasts and a huge accomplishment for its creator. Even if it won’t be able to win a trophy due to restrictive regulations, the SCG 003’s presence at Le Mans would reminds us what actual racing is all about and where it all began. It would all be like Ferrari vs "the garagistas" all over again.
Find our more about the SCG 003 in our full review here.