Porsche and motorsport success have been inseparable for most of the company’s history. That said, there has never been a period of motorsport dominance quite like Porsche’s run with the 956 and 962 prototype racers. With four overall wins at Le Mans for the 956 and three more for its successor, they remain some of the most potent and beloved racing cars of all time. Thanks to YouTuber Robbert Alblas, we have a chance to hop onboard a Porsche 962 as it races other Group C machines around Spa.

Porsche began development of the 962 in response to the 956’s inability to participate in North America’s IMSA GTP series. That ban from the Americans had come as a result of the driver’s feet sitting ahead of the front axle line inside of the 956, which was allowed in Group C in Europe but barred Stateside. As such, the automaker began to rework the 956’s aluminum monocoque to support an effort across the Atlantic. This chassis work, new safety structure, and further development would ultimately extend the era of the Porsche’s prototype dominance with the 962 and 962C’s introduction in 1984. The car retained a 2.65-liter twin-turbocharged Type 935 flat-six in Group C, but GTP racers received a single-turbo variant of the engine.

An Andial-supplied 3.2-liter engine would arrive in GTP for 1985, while European teams would see 2.8, 3.0 and 3.2-liter variants of the flat-six with twin turbos throughout the run. The Group C variant featured in the clip features the 3.0-liter variant of the flat-six, with all of the vintage turbo attitude one could hope for. The 962 also served as the development testbed for Porsche’s Doppelkupplungsgetriebe (PDK) transmission under the eye of Hans-Joachim Stuck. Issues with clutch reliability in those early days kept PDKs out of endurance-racing 962s like the one you see here.

The Porsche 962 didn’t dominate in the same way as the 956, but the car was strong enough to help Porsche cap off seven straight years of Le Mans victories. The 962 would take home those honors in 1986, 1987, and 1994. The latter is particularly impressive, as that victory came an entire decade after the car had made its first start. Other notable victories include five overall wins at Daytona and several ADAC Würth Supercup titles. Footage like this only further highlights how much talent and skill it must have taken to put these cars in position to win like that for so long.

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2023-05-30T15:46:49Z dg43tfdfdgfd