SCG 003S

SCG $2.2m WE SAY: DEEP POCK­ETS? LIKE A TRACKDAY? LOOK NO FUR­THER...

Top Gear (UK) - - CONTENTS - ROWAN HORN­CAS­TLE

‘Race­car for the road’ gets bandied around a lot. But this is the real deal. It’s the SCG003S – a new road-le­gal Amer­i­can hy­per­car that bears the DNA of an N24 en­durance racer.

The brain­child of Jim Glick­en­haus (you can read more about him on p110), it’s de­signed to go toe-to-toe with lim­ited-run hy­per­car ate­liers like Koenigsegg and Pa­gani, but de­mol­ish the es­tab­lished big boys of McLaren and Fer­rari with cir­cuit-crush­ing per­for­mance.

That ‘S’ at the end of that bar­code of a name stands for Stradale – a soft­ened-off road-le­gal vari­ant of the ‘C’ (Com­pe­tizione) that took pole at the N24 in 2015 but shares the same car­bon­fi­bre mono­coque chas­sis and LMP2 lev­els of aero­dy­namic down­force.

Pow­ered by a 4.4-litre twin-turbo V8 from a BMW M6 racer, 750bhp and over 590lb ft of torque is sent to the rear wheels via a 7spd sin­gle-clutch gear­box. Then there are dou­ble wish­bone pushrods with ad­justable dampers, car­bon Brembo brakes, and speed. Lots of speed.

Ca­pa­ble of 0–60mph in less than 2.9secs, a 217mph top speed, more than 2g of me­chan­i­cal grip, and 850kg of down­force at 155mph, it’s got a ’Ring lap­time of 6:30 in it, ap­par­ently.

But, amaz­ingly, the 003S does not drive like a race­car. It doesn’t stut­ter or nois­ily galumph like an N24 racer. It’s soft and man­age­able. Ad­mit­tedly, there’s 400kg of sound dead­en­ing and soft­ness (rub­ber mount­ings in­stead of rose-jointed, etc) to make it more com­pli­ant com­pared with its rac­ing sib­ling, but throw­ing it down a road, the S has a flu­id­ity to it. How­ever, bury your right foot and the car gains a whole new char­ac­ter.

Lower in the rev range, the car floats on the torque, but if you com­mit it wakes up and comes in with a wave of fury. It be­comes loud, vis­ceral and things get blurry very quickly. It’s ad­dic­tive.

At $2.2m it’s ex­pen­sive. But Pa­gani charges £15m for a 20-year-old car (Zonda Barchetta) mak­ing this race-de­rived, proven chas­sis look a bar­gain. And, with only two or three made a year, you’ll have one of the rarest and most ca­pa­ble road cars you can track.

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