Building a V8 monster
It is said that supercars and everything about them will be in an entirely different place in 10 years to come. There is nothing as invigorating as hearing the roars of a powered up the V8 engine. The whole experience gives an all-time rush of blood to the head, especially if one is an avid petrol head. However, most out of factory models are beyond many people’s budget reach so why not build one that is customised for racing! That said, there are stringent rules as to how the cars can be customised to make it fit for the V8 racing track. The sole intent that governs these rules is simple. V8 Supercar racing is supposed to be affordable so that participants and their sponsors don’t have to lots of cash on custom-designed state-of-the-art race cars which sometimes can amount to millions of dollars. The goal behind V8 Supercar racing is to emphasise the drivers and not necessarily the cars. In this respect, the cars need to be as standardised across the board and thus keeping a level playing field. In 2003, Project Blueprint was introduced to V8 Supercar racing. Project Blueprint lay down specific rules so that the cars would have the same racing dynamics. The kind that is good enough to bring to a dogfight. Some of the key restrictions imposed by Project Blueprint are;
It is not uncommon to build the body of a car using a space-frame construction. This is when a series of struts are laid out in a geometric triangular pattern. This frame keeps the bodies of the vehicle rigid but also doesn’t compromise on weight. The same concept is used in building constructions even though space-frame construction is not typically used in mass production car models.
V8 Supercars must be built to have a front engine with rear-wheel drive. It should be a 5-litre engine capable of unleashing between 620 and 650 horsepower and with a compression ratio of 10:1.
The aerodynamic systems used on V8 Supercars for the track must all be similar by using the same types of spoilers, air dam on the front and side skirts.
The rules also dictate that all supercars must be fitted with steel are steel brakes as opposed to the used carbon brakes.
The front suspension uses a double-wishbone design while the rear is fitted with a solid axle suspension.
Driving teams are allowed a set number of tires for each race, with one set allowed to be of a softer construction than the control tire used as a standard for the vehicles.
So how much can the V8 Supercar teams part with when putting together their roaring machines? It is still unknown what the exact figures are, but are estimated to be not less than $600,000 per car, with almost $130,000 directed at sprucing up the engine. V8 Supercar teams use and maintain two cars, and the running costs can go as high as $10 million for an entire championship season. So, in as much as V8 Supercar racing may be more affordable in context than some other forms of racing, it still breaks the bank for many.