2004 Panoz Esperante GTLM GT2
After building sports prototypes for years, Panoz starting developing race versions of their Esperante, a two seat roadster built on an aluminum chassis and powered by Ford’s SVT V8. With help from Elan Motorsports, Panoz raced the Esperante with success in the Trans-Am championship and it only made sense to contest it in Don Panoz’s own ALMS series.
Panoz partnered with Multimatic from Ontario Canada, to release GTLM road-going supercar which provided a basis for the 2004 contender. To cope with the air intake restrictions imposed by the governing bodies, Panoz had Elan Racing bore out the 4.6 liter MOD V8 to 5.0 liters and remove the supercharger.
In 2004, the GTLM was tested out on a number of tracks, and the Panoz gave the green light to contest the entire ALMS 2005 season. A highlight victory was achieved at the Road Atlanta where the GTLM of Bill Auberlen and Robin Liddell achieved a first in class over the factory-backed Porsche teams. Due to reliability, the GTLM factory racing team couldn’t keep up their Atlanta pace, and fell wayside to Porsche for the rest of the season including their first visit to Lemans.
Currently, the upcoming 2006 season couldn’t look any more promising for the Panoz team. Raced and developed by Multimatic Motorsports, they have managed to ‘crush’ the class record at Sebring during winter testing by more than two seconds. The followed up by dominatinh the opening round of 2006 American Le Mans Series, with the #50 Panoz Esperante GTLM of David Brabham, Scott Maxwell and Sebastien Bourdais winning the GT2 class in the Twelve Hours of Sebring. Despite tough challenges from the Ferrari, Porsche and BMW opposition, the #50 Panoz Esperante led 178 of the 320 laps completed to win it class, just 5.365 seconds ahead of the Porsche of Mark Lieb, Jon Fogarty and Johannes van Overbeek.
Story by Supercars.net
|submitted by||Richard Owen|
|engine||Elan Power-Modified, Ford MOD V8|
|valvetrain||DOHC, 4 Valves per Cyl|
|displacement||4995 cc / 304.8 in³|
|bore||94 mm / 3.7 in|
|stroke||90 mm / 3.54 in|
|power||372.9 kw / 500 bhp|
|specific output||100.1 bhp per litre|
|bhp/weight||416.67 bhp per tonne|
|torque||610.12 nm / 450 ft lbs|
|body / frame||Aluminum Frame w/Front & Rear Steel Subframes|
|wheel type||BBS magnesium|
|front brakes||Iron Discs w/6-Piston Calipers|
|f brake size||mm / in|
|rear brakes||Iron Discs w/4-Piston Calipers|
|r brake size||mm / in|
|front wheels||F 45.7 x 31.8 cm / 18 x 12.5 in|
|rear wheels||R 45.7 x 33.0 cm / 18 x 13 in|
|steering||Rack & Pinion w/Power Assist|
|f suspension||Wishbones w/Coils over DSSV Dampers, Adj Anti-Roll Bar|
|r suspension||Wishbones w/Coils over DSSV Dampers, Adj Anti-Roll Bar|
|curb weight||1200 kg / 2645 lbs|
|wheelbase||2692 mm / 106 in|
|front track||1608 mm / 63.3 in|
|rear track||1626 mm / 64.0 in|
|transmission||Hewland 6-Speed Sequential|