The Nurburgring has a new four-door king. Well, ish - the 7min 20.1sec lap set by the Lynk & Co 03 Cyan Concept is indeed faster than the most recent effort from the Jaguar XE SV Project 8, but as the name of the thing implies, it’s no production car.
Since no non-production four-door car has gone quicker, however, the bewinged 03’s lap from 2017 WTCC champion Thed Björk does get through on a technicality. At the same time, it’s gone faster than any other front-wheel drive car.
Yep, the 03 Cyan’s heavily turbocharged 2.0-litre inline-four sends all of its 521bhp output through the front wheels, via a six-speed sequential racing gearbox and a mechanical limited-slip differential. It went 25 seconds faster than the Megane RS Trophy R did a few months ago, although since the £72,000 Renault Sport machine is a production car, its record does still stand.
And if you thought the idea of a £72k Renault was weird enough, just wait until you’re befuddled by the origins of this 03. Lynk & Co is a Canadian company backed by Chinese firm Geely, and its core aims involve ‘flexible ownership’ of cars. It’s not the kind of firm you’d expect to be bothered about fast cars and/or motorsport, and yet it’s competing in the World Touring Car Cup this year.
Its entry is built by Cyan Racing, a private entity formed in 1996. You’re much more likely to know it by its former name: Polestar. The company was responsible for Volvo’s racing activities, and played a part in the development of cars like the V60 Polestar before the Swedish carmaker repurposed the brand for hybrid and electric vehicles.
The car it sent around the Nurburgring started life as a Lynk & Co 03 saloon, before being reborn with Öhlins adjustable dampers, a widened track and 285mm-wide tyres. It’s inspired by the Lynk & Co 03 WTCC car, although it develops far more power than its competition-ready cousin.
It’s strictly a concept for now, but Cyan Racing R&D boss Henrik Fries has previously described the car as a “development platform for future production performance road cars based on Lynk & Co technology”. Watch this space, in other words…