Cyan Racing Volvo P1800 First Drive: The Swedish answer to Singer Porsches

There is a excellent probability you’ve in no way read of Cyan Racing unless of course you are a fan of Entire world Touring Car or truck Championship racing. Its preceding identify may ring a bell, having said that: Polestar Racing. Before the performance street car side of its enterprise was bought to Volvo, and consequently lengthy right before that enterprise was in flip spun off into an electrical car or truck brand name, Polestar designed and campaigned racecars. Now recognised as Cyan Racing, it has experienced really the run of results, far too, as they’re the reigning champions in the WTCC series with 5 titles so considerably. Someway, they identified the time to build anything completely various: the Volvo P1800 Cyan.

As the title implies, it is based mostly on the P1800 coupe that was created from 1961 by way of 1973. Readers of a particular age will associate that car with Roger Moore as The Saint, ahead of he turned James Bond. The P1800 has constantly been an anomaly in the Volvo lineage. Its traditional condition came from the Frua/Ghia studio in Italy and even even though it hardly ever had athletics vehicle credentials, the P1800 had a modest but loyal next. So faithful that a P1800S holds a Guinness Environment Document for the 3.25 million miles driven by its authentic owner.

Despite the P1800 Cyan’s simple similarity to the first Volvo coupe, it’s an fully different beast.  The only items that stay from the primary 1964 donor motor vehicle are its steel chassis, hood launch, handbrake, and windshield wipers. Superior-toughness steel has changed significantly of the substructure and the entire body has been reimagined in carbon fiber.

Less than the hood is a turbocharged 2.-liter four-cylinder sourced from the Volvo S60 TC1 race auto. It generates a stunning 420 horsepower and 336 pound-feet of torque at 6,000 rpm. Bolted to the block is a 5-speed Holinger guide transmission that sends power to the rear wheels. The initial P1800’s stay axle is replaced by an impartial rear with entrance and rear double-wishbone suspensions being entirely adjustable. The 18-inch custom made wheels are shod with Pirelli P Zero rubber: 235 widths up entrance and 265s in the rear. This all success in a featherlight 2,180-pound suppress fat. Let’s just say that yet again for result: 2,180 lbs. Which is lighter than a Miata, folks.

At this stage, the P1800 Cyan is currently unreasonably cool, but wait around, there’s so much extra. Hans Baath, normal manager for Cyan Racing proudly admits that Singer Auto Layouts is a substantial inspiration for this challenge, and if you have at any time noticed a Singer Porsche in individual, you probably have an idea of what’s following.

The consideration to element is most effective described as fanatical or obsessive. The bodywork is excellent plenty of that you’d by no means guess it was carbon fiber and all of the glass is custom produced. Then there is all of that mouth watering chrome trim. There are no waves or dimples in any of people trim features because they are produced from billet aluminum, which include the substantial D-formed facet window encompass. Just think about how significant and thick that metallic panel was prior to that encompass was carved from it. The similar retains legitimate for the doorway handles, bumpers, mirrors and gentle surrounds. To our information, only Pagani goes to these extremes.

The motor bay receives the identical treatment, starting with the hood which is louvered on the passenger aspect only, to draw warmth away from the turbocharger. That turbo is tucked neatly below the interlocked knuckle of exhaust headers, instead than garishly notable. A row of a few fluid reservoirs are lined up with obsessive perfection and the hard traces are bent to properly conform to the firewall and interior fenders. Even the adjustable ratio steering is assisted electronically fairly than hydraulically in get to clear up the front of the engine.

Then there is the inside. With the satisfying kind of simply click you’d get from a Zippo lighter, the doorway tackle button carefully but definitively releases the latch to reveal a superbly finished door jamb. You have to shimmy in excess of the roll cage’s oblique doorway bar, which is titanium beneath a leather wrapping, for the reason that of system it is. The deep Recaro racing buckets are quite snug, but as reassuring as what you’d imagine a bear hug from Mario Andretti would come to feel like. The five-level Momo belts give you that final bit of theater, however they are restrictive by structure (you’ll want to shut the door ahead of you strap in mainly because you may possibly not be equipped to attain it later).

Certainly, even the inside door panel is something to behold. It is dominated by a rough woolen cloth that is framed top rated-and-bottom by some extremely wonderful-grained leather factors that have to look and really feel of some thing you’d obtain in a new Alpina BMW. Hans was also keen to issue out that they toured the Alpina operation – they must’ve taken copious notes. The leather door handles and release straps are nicer than the belts in most wardrobes, and two steel toggle switches run the home windows.

The woolen fabric is used in the inset sprint panels and encompass the analog gauges and switchgear with quite interesting effects. The instrument panel looks primary at to start with look, but then you recognize the redline on the tach is at 8,000 rpm and the speedometer goes to 270 kph. Sitting down atop the sprint is a smaller, jewel-like ovoid mirror. Driving the seats are some modest parcel shelves, also in that delicious wool, even though it usually takes pretty a bit of wrangling to get anything at all in or out of there. The trunk is mostly taken up by a huge gasoline cell and topped by a beautiful chrome filler flap, but you really should be capable to wedge some smaller baggage all over the sides. That must make this P1800 useful ample.

Prior to getting into drive impressions, it’s vital to take note that there are only 3 of these P1800 Cyans in existence so considerably, and just about every has its individual temperament that is dictated by the owners’ wants. If you’re productive enough to find the money for the $700,000 price of admission, the car or truck will be custom-tailored to you. You could forego the racing seats and roll cage door bar for less difficult entry, as nicely as have the engine, transmission and suspension tuned to your desire.

We met Cyan venture supervisor Hans Baath (pictured earlier mentioned) and head of engineering Matia Evensson at the base of Angeles Crest Freeway early on a Friday morning. As we tore up that wickedly sinuous street in direction of the Excellent Vibes Breakfast Club gathering at Newcomb’s Ranch at the best, the best of the P1800 Cyan’s personality shone through.

With a flick of the very small steel crucial, the brutish 4-cylinder springs to lifestyle. The motor and exhaust merge for an inspiring take note reminiscent of the projection and variability of a tenor trombone. It’s not as tough as the typical race engine at idle, nor is it as obnoxious as a Honda Civic with a megaphone pipe. It’s pleasing devoid of remaining ear-shattering, and there’s an addictive turbo whoosh and wheeze to give you even further encouragement. There’s definitely an overabundance of electricity, but it’s simple to take care of when you just want to cruise.

Previous 5,000 rpm, that properly-mannered athleticism turns into concentrated aggression as the turbo engages total Dyson manner, canceling out the hurry of wind as a result of the open up home windows. The tach needle shoots from noon to a few o’clock swiftly enough that you will need to be aware of about-revving the motor. Shifting from the pet dog-leg first gear to 2nd is much easier than you may well imagine, primarily if you allow the slender shifter do what it wishes to do. There’s also a pleasant click-simply click with each change which is reminiscent of the 1st-era Audi R8’s guide gates.

The seat wouldn’t arrive ahead adequate for a 5-foot-10 driver to simply push the clutch to the flooring, but vintage heel-toe downshifts could nonetheless be executed with just the edges of the correct shoe. The brakes are not assisted nor are they antilocks, but the AP Racing-sourced calipers and rotors will get the P1800 slowed in speedy trend without having drama. The rigid brake pedal is quick to path with sensitive precision and the exertion is large adequate that you can skip leg day at the gymnasium.

Steering is as immediate as a Lotus and it is crystal clear that the motor vehicle is at this time tuned with racing in brain. There’s no on-middle really feel, because racetrack straightaways are almost never that extended, resulting in a wickedly brief convert-in with minimum steering input. Dealing with is exceptional as the dazzling blue streak corners with minimal entire body roll, nonetheless there is sufficient preliminary compliance to rest over mid-corner bumps.

As head of engineering Matia Evensson suggests, the P1800 Cyan is indeed at household the two at the monitor and on roads such as Angeles Crest Highway. They wanted the immediate feel and hard work that suggests it is a racecar devoid of becoming as physically demanding or punishing. By all accounts, they succeeded. If it were our 3-quarters-of-a-million generation, we’d regulate the front wheel caster to retrieve some of the highway on-center feel and ditch the race seats and door bar for easier accessibility. Usually, it could be saved as-is.

We pulled into Newcomb’s Ranch as the motor vehicle group was filling up the great deal. The P1800 Cyan undoubtedly found the proper crowd for notice and we even scored a place right upcoming to a seriously modified Volvo V60 Polestar with its operator, Jeff Reeb, who proved unequivocally that sure, the substantial-effectiveness Volvo subculture is very a lot alive.

The Volvo P1800 Cyan will devote its summer season in the United States, ultimately ending up at the Quail throughout Monterey vehicle week on August 19. We have been fortunate more than enough to get early obtain, but there’s no question you’ll be observing a ton of this auto on the internet. Considering the fact that Cyan utilized Singer as a target, we could say with self-assurance that this P1800 hit the bullseye. Relatively than perfect the already accomplished Porsche 911, Cyan’s funky, obscure decision lends it even more personality. Contacting both of these a restomod is a disservice. They are restomods in the identical way the DaVinci notebook is just a assortment of scribbles.