With the Le Mans endurance race coming up again this weekend, it’s fitting that we show you some new pictures and talk a little about the Koenigsegg CCGT – a Le Mans racer that was sadly cut down before it turned a single corner in anger.
Racing is the dream of every sports car manufacturer and such was the case here in Ängelholm. Our dream focused on the greatest endurance race of them all – Le Mans.
The CCGT was developed on the bones of the Koenigsegg CCR but its origins go back even further to the original CC protoype. The regulations for the GT1 class at the time stated that a GT1 car was not allowed to exceed two meters in width, and that the cockpit had to be at least 70% of the width of the car. The CC prototype was designed with these regulations in mind, meaning that the road cars would become the perfect basis for competition cars in the future.
Koenigsegg was just beginning as a commercial car company and building cars for sale was the priority. The CCGT race car was therefore built as a side project when the engineers had some time available to work on it. It took several years before the car was ready for testing.
Testing and proving a prototype car, especially a race car, should be a time for excitement and eager anticipation. Sadly, it marked the end of the CCGT program. There was nothing wrong with the car. On the contrary it showed great performance during testing and was very controllable and fun to drive. It’s as exciting today as it was back then.
The problem was that the governing bodies changed the rules for the Le Mans GT1 class, with carbon fibre monocoques disallowed and the minimum production number rising from 20 over several years to over 350 per year!
The CCGT weighed just under 1,000kg dry. It was built from reinforced carbonfibre and kevlar and ballast was needed to bring it up to the GT1 minimum weight of 1,100kg. The 5-litre dry-sump engine is normally aspirated and governed by a Nira management system developed specifically for the CCGT, producing over 600hp. Brakes are AP racing’s top-shelf 362mm 6-pot GT1 Spec both front and rear. The result is a dynamic, super-stiff car that would have been very competitive.
A Koenigsegg car of any iteration is a very rare thing. The CCGT is arguably the rarest Koenigsegg of them all; a one-of-a-kind classic that may never be replicated.
Photos by James Holm.