The Porsche 962 is one of the most successful Group C racing prototypes ever built. Following its success on the racing circuit, a number of companies thought it would be a great idea to turn it into a road car as well-in exchange for a few million bucks. After all, it was the 1990s, and pretty much anything seemed possible.
The first to get there was Koenig Specials, who gave their C62s new bodies and engines bored to 3.4 liters, complete with Bosch's latest fuel injection. Then came DP Motorsport, the Switec-Porsche 962C, and the most famous limited edition of them all, the Dauer 962 LM. But it would be rude to forget about the six street-legal 962s built by Australia's Vern Schuppan, since the Porsche Schuppan 962CR represents the biggest departure from the Group C original.
Schuppan won the 1983 24 Hours of Le Mans driving a Porsche 956. While still enjoying Porsche's support a few years later, he started a business converting 962Rs for road use. With the backing of some Japanese investors, the project soon entered its next phase, with Schuppan developing a road-going 962 from the ground up.
Known as the Schuppan 962CR, the car was designed by fellow Australian Michael Simcoe as a 50-unit limited-run machine, a production number that would have allowed the car to race at Le Mans. Unfortunately, the Japanese economy had collapsed by 1992, leaving Schuppan's investors dry, and forcing his company into bankruptcy after just six 962CRs had been built. Five remain today, as one was destroyed in a fire. The team never made it to the Mulsanne.
This particular example, a "zero-mile" right-hand drive Schuppan 962, was completed in 1993, with a unique body and other subtle modifications in the engine bay. Its dry-sump 3.3-liter twin-turbo flat-six produces 550 horsepower at low boost, 850 for qualification, and can only run on race gas. Yet it has catalytic converters, turn signals, and a passenger seat where the ECU used to be on the racing car, all of which help this wild machine at least try to pass itself off as a street car. The Schuppan-branded Alcon brakes are a nice touch.
Crazy thing is, this car has never been driven before. Soon after UK-based Modena Cars assembled this example, the company's finances went into shambles. A manufacturer of bus windshields was one of Schuppan's creditors; the president of the glass company took this car as partial payment, storing it at his office from 1995 to 2015. Since its reappearance at Daytona in 2015, this one-off 962CR has undergone a complete overhaul, and is currently cared for by Matthew Ivanhoe. And who else could put on the car's first break-in miles than Jay Leno?
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