For most, free time is an opportunity to unwind and relax. But that's not the case with Christian von Koenigsegg and his team of dedicated engineers. Instead, they leverage their downtime to design and create something truly extraordinary—a racing prototype that could hold its own in the world's most gruelling endurance race.
Koenigsegg's Passion Project: The CCGT GT1 Le Mans
Their side project, a unique creation that reflects the finest of Koenigsegg's craft, made headlines at the Goodwood Festival of Speed last weekend. Auctioned for a staggering £3.3 million, the engineering marvel is known as the Koenigsegg CCGT GT1 Le Mans.
This one-off model epitomises the marriage of sheer power and innovative design. What gives the CCGT its heart-thumping power is a naturally aspirated V8 engine, delivering over 600 horsepower. Even more impressively, the vehicle weighs less than 1,000 kg.
A remarkable feat made possible by crafting the body from a blend of carbon and Kevlar—materials renowned for their superior strength-to-weight ratio. The aerodynamics package of this magnificent prototype contributes to an impressive 600 kg of downforce.
This is further complemented by the carbon honeycomb chassis, pushrod suspension, sizeable brakes, and a sequential gearbox—a testament to Koenigsegg's unparalleled attention to detail.
Years of Dedication and Craftsmanship
The CCGT is the culmination of three years of meticulous development and handcrafting.
Dag Bolenius, a seasoned veteran of the Koenigsegg team, led the project. In 2008, professional test driver Loris Bicocchi had the privilege of taking this extraordinary machine for its first spin. Despite their hard work and dedication, Koenigsegg's journey to the Le Mans race was abruptly halted.
The Automobile Club de l'Ouest (ACO) and the Fédération Internationale de l'Automobile (FIA) modified the rules for the GT1 class. Homologation production figures, the number of cars a manufacturer must produce to be eligible to compete, spiked from 20 cars over several years to a whopping 350 cars per year.
This change in regulations effectively ended Koenigsegg's ambitions to compete in the "la Sarthe." Regardless, the story of the Koenigsegg CCGT GT1 Le Mans serves as a testament to relentless innovation, meticulous craftsmanship, and an unyielding passion for automotive excellence. It's a story that continues to inspire motor enthusiasts and engineering minds across the globe.