Geelong Advertiser - Motoring - - FRONT PAGE -

THE Panoz Esper­ante GTR-1 thun­dered its way into race fans’ mem­o­ries with its ca­cophonous V8 roar and blis­ter­ing pace. When en­tre­pre­neur Don Panoz com­mis­sioned car de­signer Adrian Rey­nard to cre­ate the

for his newly-founded Mo­tor Sport Group, it was the first front-en­gine pro­to­type race in 30 years of mo­tor­sports.

The Panoz Esper­ante GTR-1 with its 6.0-litre Ford-based V8 en­gine com­peted in in­ter­na­tional en­durance rac­ing var­i­ous forms from 1997 to 2003.

One version, the 1998 Panoz Q9 Hy­brid — af­fec­tion­ately known as Sparky was the first suc­cess­ful mod­ern hy­brid race car.

In all, Esper­ante GTR-1 scored 20 podium fin­ishes with five over­all wins and nine class vic­to­ries.

Paving the way for the car street le­gal Panoz Le Mans Ho­molo­ga­tion Spe­cial, cre­ated so iconic fron­tengine Esper­ante GTR-1 race could com­pete in

1997 24 Hours of and other en­durance rac­ing events. This one re­main­ing Esper­ante

Spe­cial has been painstak­ingly re­stored over six months was dis­played at the re­cent Dubai mo­tor show.

It has re­mained in the Panoz col­lec­tion in Brasel­ton its en­tire ex­is­tence.

Fancy your very own Esper­ante GTR-1? Panoz can ful­fil dreams of those who wish to own a street-le­gal GTR-1, with car­bon fi­bre replica or a mod­i­fied version us­ing alternate com­pos­ites and light­weight tech­nolo­gies.

Pric­ing starts at $890,000 and is de­pen­dent on the cus­tomer’s per­son­al­i­sa­tion re­quire­ments.

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