1-of-1 Sport Quattro S1 art car celebrates Audi’s hill climb glory days
The annual SEMA show in Las Vegas Nevada has car builders from across the United States and across the world vying for the attention of tens of thousands of showgoers. Some go to great lengths to draw attention to their cars with big press conferences and flashy unveilings, but even without any extra fanfare, the eye-popping livery of this race-inspired ride had our attention from the moment we spotted it.
Germany’s LCE Performance has built plenty of notable Audi Quattros in the past, including one that was recently acquired by Ken Block. This outfit is the mastermind behind this collaboration with artist Tomyboy that serves both as a tribute to Walter Röhrl’s record-breaking 1987 Pikes Peak run and as a lively exercise in what the shop is capable of.
This flared and winged Audi Sport Quattro S1 E2 was built from two Quattro donor cars. The two cars were mixed and matched to get a sturdy foundation on which to build a suitable tribute to the pioneering hillclimber that was the first to break the 11-minute barrier at Pikes Peak. With the sheetmetal nearly sorted out, LCE grafted on the characteristic boxy flares. Despite the extra real estate of the flares and the big wing in the back, the carbon fiber additions managed to shed some mass, as this svelte hillclimber weighs just 2435 pounds.
Like its racing inspiration, the tribute is powered by a snorting and popping 2.5-liter turbocharged inline-five. The 20-valve engine is fed up to 2.7-bar of boost thanks to a K27 turbo by way of a Wagner Tuning charge cooler. The result is 750 hp, although a race fuel tune could bump that into the four-digit realm.
There’s clearly not enough room here for a front-mounted radiator, given the five cylinders of fury taking up all of the room under the hood. Instead, a massive aluminum radiator out back draws in air from what may be the largest automotive NACA duct we’ve ever seen. There’s so much going on with the car’s brilliant, contrasting colors that we nearly missed it.
The bold splatter graphics were designed by the artist, Tomyboy, and carry over into the interior where you’ll find carbon-fiber Recaro buckets with OMP racing harnesses. Even though the colors spill into the interior it’s a bit more subdued in the cockpit, with a simple switch panel and compact digital dash from ECUMaster.
A six-speed sequential shifter lets the driver grab gears with speed and precision. A digital large digital indicator on the dash helps keep track of which gear is selected, which is helpful as things can happen in a hurry when you’ve got 750 hp on tap.
LCE sees this 1-of-1 creation as an art car, so while they can build you one very much like it, don’t expect to drive off in an exact replica. Nor should you plan on recreating any of Walter Röhrl’s behind-the-wheel heroics. That is, of course, unless Walter Röhrl would like to get back behind the wheel again and show us all how it’s done.