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Will the SCG003 supercar offer the Lexus LFA V10 as an option?

After the late March accident that killed a spectator at the season-opening VLN race at Germany’s Nürburgring threatened the 43rd annual ADAC Zurich 24 Hours of Nürburgring race and ultimately led to the imposition of speed limits on portions of the track, the show fortunately went on as scheduled. Of the 159 cars entered in the race’s mind-boggling 21 different classes, 151 actually rolled past the starting flag on Saturday 16 May. From the Toyota universe, these ran the gamut from the two Toyota GT 86s that had the V3 (close-to-stock cars with naturally-aspirated engines between 1801 and 2000cc) class to themselves to the two Toyota Corolla Altis sedans brought over by Toyota team Thailand to compete in the 12 entry-strong SP-3 (more highly modified cars powered by 1751-2000cc naturally-aspirated engines) class to the SP-3T (more highly modified cars powered by 1621-2000cc turbocharged engines) class that saw the #187 Gazoo Racing Lexus RC lose to the class-winning #114 Subaru Tecnica International WRX STI. And let’s not forget the big guns: the #54 Baumann Lexus Racing IS F CCS-R that took 2nd place in the SP-8 (for cars with naturally aspirated engines between 4001 and 6250cc capacity) class and the #53 Gazoo Racing Lexus LFA Code X that beat out a couple of highly-modified Porsche 911s to take top honors in the SP-Pro class (which encompasses SP-6, SP-7 and SP-8 cars with non-standard engines larger than 3 liters).

We’ll be the first to admit that, with so many cars competing in a single race, there are a good number of compelling stories beyond the vehicles cited above. Jalopnik‘s European editor Máté Petrány was particularly smitten by the sole team in the SP-X class (for special vehicles, admitted upon special invitation only): Scuderia Cameron Glickenhaus and their SCG003C racers. For the uninitiated, SCG is the brainchild of James Glickenhaus, a film director, producer and screenwriter who also heads the Glickenhaus & Company Wall Street finance firm started by his father, Seth Glickenhaus. Oh, and the junior Glickenhaus also happens to own an extensive collection of rare exotic and racing cars. He was particularly enamored of the concept of dual-purpose racers that, with a minimum of modification, could also be driven on public roads. His first bespoke attempt in that regard (the de facto SCG001) was the Lola T70 SL 71-32 shown above, an ex-Donohue-Penske Lola T70 open-topped Can-Am racer that was modified to receive a Lola coupe body and, in Mr. Glickenhaus’ words,

…converted several things to make it cool on the road. And I drove that thing about 60,000 miles

What really put James Glickenhaus on the map as a hardcore car enthusiast with the means to make his one-off automotive dreams come true, however, was the Ferrari P4/5 by Pininfarina shown below. Simplistically, it’s a rebody of the last Ferrari Enzo, built in a style that pays homage to the 330 P3/4 sports prototype racer also in Glickenhaus’ collection. In reality, not only did he, in conjunction with Pininfarina’s Ken Okuyama and Jason Castriota create a more beautiful Enzo, but they also made it better and faster. As Ted West of Car and Driver noted,

In Pininfarina’s moving-road wind tunnel, the P4/5 proved to have more efficient cooling, higher downforce, and better balance than the Enzo, combined with a 0.34 coefficient of drag.

With its stock 650-hp Enzo V-12, but only 2645 pounds to haul (versus the Enzo’s 3262-pound curb weight), P4/5 acceleration will be demonic.

In 2009, three years after the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance debut of the Ferrari P4/5 by Pininfarina, Glickenhaus announced his intent to produce a racing version. The P4/5 Competizione (unofficially SCG002) appeared 2 years later, built around a Ferrari 430 Scuderia. In stark contrast to Maranello’s embrace of the streetgoing original, Wikipedia tells us that

Ferrari completely distanced themselves from the P4/5 Competizione project in 2011, refusing to sell the team parts for vital engine rebuilds between races.

Undeterred, James Glickenhaus then set out to create his own dedicated racer-cum-street car, under the Scuderia Cameron Glickenhaus brand (Cameron is his wife Margaret’s maiden name, and Scuderia is an Italian term often used to denote racing teams). A December 2013 announcement stated the objectives of presenting the SCG003 at the 2015 Geneva Motor Show and then competing in the 24 Hours of the Nürburgring race, goals both accomplished. At Geneva, in fact, two distinct versions appeared, the SCG003C (Competizione) racer, powered by a version of the Honda Performance Development (HPD) HR35TT twin-turbocharged 3.5-liter V6 further enhanced by Autotecnica Motori and Bosch Motorsport Electronics; and the SC003S (Stradale) shown at the top of our story, a streetable version offering a number of undisclosed engine options ranging from a twin turbo V6 (not necessarily the aforementioned Honda unit) to a twin turbo V12 or W12.

And here is where informed speculation goes into hyperdrive (and where Kaizen Factor comes in), for mixed in among the numerous Jalopnik articles from Máté Petrány on the SCG003C’s maiden appearance at the 24 hours of the Nürburgring is one on the SCG003 Stradale informing us that

…a rev-happy V10 will also make it to its options list…

But for that kind of money ($2.6 million), some people want the response and sound that only a naturally aspirated V10 can give, so Scuderia Cameron Glickenhaus will offer the car with that as well. Said V10 had to be compact enough to fit in that sleek body, and since fuel consumption isn’t something they need to worry about, it’s only up to Bosch’s engineers to make it comply with Euro 6 emission regulations. Once that’s done, everything will be ready for a V10 party.

Hmmm…there really aren’t all that many different V10 engines around, and, right off the bat, the first post-article comment, from NGN_DZNR, echoes yours truly’s thoughts:

I’m curious to know whose engine they are using. Its crazy expensive to design, manufacture and certify an engine from the ground up. Are they procuring the V10’s from Audi (R8), Porsche (old Carrera GT) or Yamaha (LFA)?

To that list, we could add the V10s from the E60/63/64 BMW M5 and M6, plus the Dodge Viper engine. We can surely rule out truckish V10s such as the Ford Triton and the Volkswagen 5.0 TDI diesel. But rev-happy? Compact? That certainly describes the Lexus LFA’s 1LR-GUE 4.8-liter V10 to a tee (in fact, it’s physically smaller and lighter than the 2GR-FSE 3.5-liter V6 that powers the Lexus IS 350!). A couple of other Jalopnik commentators agreed, but none put it more eloquently than Le Monstre:

I’m going to say his clue is rev happy, which I would point towards the LFA’s Yamaha V10, also since Lexus is part of Honda, and that’s what he’s running now. Plus the 1LR-GUE is 72 degrees, making it quite slim, and is said to be smaller then most V8’s.

If this is true, and I’m just about to put a paychecks worth betting it is, that sexy sounding engine will be used again, which would certainly turn heads and create a small cult of fans where ever track it goes to.

EDIT: just reading up on the 1LR-GUE, it exceeded the Euro V emissions, and is lighter the the 3.5 V6, so with my super sleuth skills, and no help in any way by any editors or journalists, I’m going to say he will be using the “Roar of an Angel”

Well…disregard the “Lexus is part of Honda” comment. No doubt a number of people might be horrified at that notion. Using the LFA V10 again is certainly a dream of many, and it was also rumored in the early Dany Bahar mental masturbation days when he ran Lotus that the V10 might be offered as part of the stillborn Esprit supercar revival.

Máté Petrány knows the answer to the riddle, but has been sworn to silence by Mr. Glickenhaus. And yet, he can’t resist dropping a big hint:

All I can say is that I left a clue in there. I can also tell the Euro 6 idea didn’t play part of its original design.

The clue in question? A link to an article on Arash Farboud’s latest supercar, the AF8, which will purportedly be powered by the Judd GV V10, which is available in 5 and 5.5-liter versions. The Judd V10 racing engine has seen action in North America’s Grand Am series, in the European Le Mans series, and in the 24 Hours of Le Mans proper, where the Judd-powered Pescarolo cars saw podium finishes in 2005 and 2006.

So call it a very long shot, at best, that the SCG003S will be powered by the 1LR-GUE LFA V10. And yet, a glance at Judd’s history reveals a couple of striking coincidences. The Judd GV V10 uses a 72-degree cylinder angle, just like the LFA. Most notably, following Judd’s withdrawal from Formula One in 1992, the company turned to Yamaha to continue production of its engines. Using the Judd GV V10 as a base, Yamaha developed an all-new cylinder head and branded the motor as the OX10. Could the Yamaha-ized Judd GV OX10 been an influence or prototype of sorts for the later LFA engine?

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