1985 Porsche 962C
This factory “Werks” car is one the most historically significant Porsche racing cars of all time. It is the second 962 constructed by the factory and competed in the FIA World Endurance Championship for three years as part of Rothmans Porsche factory “Werks” team.
In the ten race 1985 championship series chassis 002, driven by Jacky Ickx and Jochen Mass, won three times: Mugello 1000km, Silverstone 1000km, and the Selangor 800km. They finished second at the Brands Hatch 1000km and a fourth at the Monza 1000km.
At the 24 Hours of Le Mans they qualified second and led much of the race only to be slowed by minor mechanical problems to finish in tenth place.
In 1986, the car was mainly used for testing at the factory and as a backup car for Rothmans Team Porsche. It only raced twice that season; the 24 Hours of Le Mans driven by Vern Schuppan and Drake Olson, and the 1000Km of Fuji driven by Derek Bell and Hans Stuck.
The Porsche 962 was built by Porsche as a replacement for the 956. Although basically the same design, the cars run in the World Sportscar Championship were designated as 962C to separate them from their IMSA GTP counterparts. The 962 was created from the 956 mainly to comply with IMSA’s regulations, which required the drivers feet to be behind the the centerline of the front axle.
Porsche extended the 956’s wheelbase, and a steel roll cage was integrated into the new aluminum monocoque chassis. For an engine, the Porsche chose the turbocharged, Type-962/70 2869cc, air-cooled, flat-6.
The 962 quickly became one of the most dominant cars in motorsport. Championships included the WSC title in 1985/86, the IMSA GT every year from 1985-88, Interserie from 1987-92, all four years of the Supercup series (1986 to 1989), and the All Japan Sports Prototype Championship from 1985 until 1989. The 962 also won the 24 Hours of Le Mans in 1986 and 1987, and was very dominant in the American IMSA series well into the 90’s.
In total, Porsche would produce only fifty six 962s between 1984 and 1991, fifteen used by the factory , and the remainder sold to privateers.