Here are some of the most iconic and successful Race Cars ever : Le Mans, F1, NASCAR, Touring & Rally ( Pictures & Brief history)
The Ferrari F2004 was a highly successful Formula One racing car designed by Rory Byrne, Ross Brawn and Aldo Costa for the2004 Formula One season. Heavily based on the previous season’s F2003-GA,the F2004 continued the run of success the team had enjoyed since 1999, winning the team’s 6th straight Constructors’ Championship and 5th straight Drivers’ Championship for Michael Schumacher, his 7th world drivers’ title overall, in 2004. It is one of the most dominant cars in the history of Formula One.
The car was introduced partway into the 1970 season, driven by Jochen Rindt and John Miles.
After 20 wins, 2 drivers’ and 3 constructors’ championships, the 72 was retired for the 1976 season and replaced by the Lotus 77.
Driven by some Rally legends : Colin McRae, Richard Burns and Petter Solberg. The Impreza proved it’s dominance in the rally world. Between 1995 and 2003, the Impreza claimed three driver and three manufacturer titles.
Between 2003 and 2006, the Xsara claimed three driver and three manufacturer titles. This was also the car in which Sébastien Loeb won the first three of his nine driver titles.
From 1990 to 1994, the Toyota Celica compete the Lancia Delta to become the dominant rally vehicle. From these five seasons, the Celica GT-Four and Celica Turbo 4WD claimed four driver and two manufacturer championships.
This car was driven by Sébastien Loeb. The combination between the driver and the car is very good, that the C4 claimed four driver and three manufacturer championships.
After Group B cars were banned following the 1986 season, Lancia demonstrated that they were in the best position to capitalize on the rule changes.
Competitors were either underpowered, like the Mazda 323, or limited by 2WD, like the BMW M3. Utilizing the Delta HF and Delta Integrale, the 2.0L turbocharged Lancia dominated the WRC by winning four driver and six manufacturer championships between 1987 and 1992.
The creator of the original Austin Mini never intended the car to be anything other than a car for the people, however by the end of the ‘60s the car had evolved into a world-beating race car. In the hands of Paddy Hopkirk it won the Monte Carlo Rally in 1964, 1965 and 1967, and were it not for a harsh disqualification owing to an illegal headlamp, it would have swept the podium in 1966 too. The Cooper also rustled up a BTCC title in 1962, and remains only one of a few cars to taste success both on the circuit and through the trees.
This car is an absolute ‘game-changer’ in Rally history. It was introduced with four-wheel drive to the World Rally Championship, a simple yet essential technology that has stayed ever since. The factory rally team, led by Finnish driver Hannu Mikkola, entered WRC competition in 1981. Racing Quattros suffered numerous early teething problems, but in 1982, Audi won nine WRC events and claimed the manufacturer’s championship. In 1983, Mikkola won the driver’s championship.
With its low-slung chassis, relatively light weight and excellent handling, the Hudson could overcome the limitations of its primitive, flathead six-cylinder engine and win races. And in 1951 Teague proved it could by easily winning the 39-lap race across the combination sand-and-road course in Daytona Beach.
Dodge tried to improve the aerodynamic of their race cars at the time. So midway through ‘69, Dodge took the Charger 500, added a long, sharklike nose and planted a 23-in.-high wing on its tail. The result was the Charger Daytona, a car that cut through the air with stunning ease and remained stable even at 200 mph. In fact, during testing at Talladega on March 24, 1970, Buddy Baker became the first driver to turn a lap at more than 200 mph in the 426 Hemi-powered No. 88 Daytona.
Building on that success, in 1970 Chrysler applied the Daytona formula to the Plymouth Road Runner to create the 1970 Superbird. And the Superbird won its first race too—the 1970 Daytona 500 with Pete Hamilton driving the No. 40 Petty Enterprises car.
It has front- instead of rear-wheel drive and a V6 instead of a V8, it’s shape has a resemblance to the one in 1987 Ford Thunderbird - it may have been as close to a perfect shape for NASCAR racing as ever devised.
In many fans’ minds the rainbow-colored 1995 to 1999 Monte Carlo will always be the ultimate Jeff Gordon race car.
The Ford GT40’s success at Le Mans is etched in the history books. The car took four back-to-back wins at the famed endurance event between 1966–1969, however it’s the motive behind those wins that impresses most. In 1963 Henry Ford II began months of negotiating with Enzo Ferrari to buy the Italian marque, only for Ferrari to pull the plug on the deal at the eleventh hour. Enraged, Ford ordered his racing division to build a car capable of destroying Ferrari at Le Mans. With a Lola chassis and a 4.7-litre Ford V8, Henry’s wish was granted, as his team dominated Le Mans four years in a row.
The Audi R8 is by far and away the most successful 21st Century race car, with a staggering five wins at the Le Mans 24 Hours between 2000–2006. In-fact the only time the R8 lost the race in that period was 2003. Besides 2003, the R8 was the yardstick in LMP1 competition, a car so quick it had to be constantly pegged back by the authorities, who regularly reduced the power output of the 3.6-litre V8 across the annual sports car season. The R8 also helped ‘Mr.Le Mans’ Tom Kristensen on his way to five out of his nine career victories at Le Sarthe.
Besides being the world’s most expensive car several times, the Ferrari 250 GTO was also one of the greatest on Motorsports. It went on to win the International Championship for GT Manufacturers three years in a row, and was the last to do so at the top-level of sports car racing with a front-mounted engine. Beautiful, successful and exclusive, the 250 GTO has earned the reputation it deserve.
No other manufacturer has dominated the race in modern years like Audi, which has notched all 13 of its victories since 2000, and is well on its way to overtaking Porsche’s record of 16 victories. Already one of the most successful cars in Le Mans history, the R18 debuted in 2011 and has won every race until 2014.
It was never intended to go racing. Eventually, pressure from customers and racing teams led to the development of the race-focused F1 GTR, and by 1995, McLaren decided to take its road car racing.
F1 GTRs stormed the 1995 Le Mans, winning overall and taking third, fourth, fifth and 13th place. In 1996, McLaren fell to Porsche’s one-two-three finish, but still had five F1s finish in the top 10. In 1997, the F1’s final year of production (and McLaren’s last Le Mans), the car was given a new set of aerodynamic upgrades, and stretched bodywork behind the rear wheels, becoming known as the “Long Tail” F1s. Long Tails finished second and third overall behind Porsche.
While Audi is on a historic hot streak today, Le Mans had never seen a manufacturer dominate the race quite like Porsche, who racked up 16 victories between 1970 and 1998.
The Porsche 956 was a Group C sports-prototype racing car designed byNorbert Singer and built by Porsche in 1982 for the FIA World Sportscar Championship. It was later upgraded to the 956B in 1984. Driven by Stefan Bellof in 1983, this car holds the all-time record for the fastest vehicle ever to lap the Nürburgring Nordschleife, completed the circuit in 6:11.13 while qualifying for the 1000km Sports Car race.
Winning every contest between 1960-1965, Ferraris entries were as breathtaking as they were formidable.
Between 1951 and 1957, Jaguar took the checkered flag five times, a feat that hadn’t been since since Bentley dominated in the 1920s.
1989 saw the RS500 become too successful for its own good. Faced with the gigantic leap in power the machine had given Ford an almost unassailable margin over their rivals in an ever thinning field of European Touring Cars
Mercedes dumped the motorsport ban, established factory-backed DTM teams, and developed a larger, 2.5-liter engine. Each company eventually developed evolution versions of its street cars, sold to the public so the same improvements could be made to the racing machines. It was too little, too late. The M3 was the ultimate victor, with 48 DTM victories to the Mercedes’ 42. But there was no one else close behind!
The BMW E30 M3 Race Car was the best example of the Group A regulations globally, and the most successful, too. In Europe it was brutal, using its lowly sprung stance and 300bhp S14 2.3-litre engine to conquer the Italian, German, British, and French Touring car championships, whilst also taking the inaugural World Touring Car Championship in the hands of Roberto Ravaglia in ’87.
It’s called “Godzilla”, simply because it came from Japan and it has rival killing ability.The Nissan Skyline GT-R R32 is arguably the most devastating Touring car ever. It dominated the 1991 Spa 24 Hours, took a trio of titles in the Australian Group A championship (1990–1992), and at home in Japan, it won 29 races from 29 starts across for seasons! The R32’s on track success was what caused the Skyline and GTR name to be one the most highly regarded amongst the enthusiasts.