The Lair.THE CAR


The 2004 car is the latest evolution of my favourite X1/9 (icsunonove), while it isn't an original Dallara Icsunonove steps have been taken to try and get things as close to the original concept and this has been helped along by the acquisition of some parts from a real Dallara. The concept has been been further extended with the addition of fabricated wishbones for the suspension.

The powerplant has very little to do with Dallara (other than being based on the same block) and is straight out of the early 1300 Uno Turbo. Over engineered by Fiat as their first ever turbo venture to compete with the likes of the Renault 5 GT Turbo back in the 80s it is generally a very reliable piece of equipment but as with everything in racing the high levels of stress placed upon the components can make short work of even the sturdiest of hardware. The engine has been updated to use a modern electric water pump as part of the effort to enhance reliability and longevity. Power output has been enhanced through some expert workmanship from Evo Engineering and the usual turbo engine trick of winding in more boost (it is rather more complicated than that but in essence rather simple). Unfortunately the engine is nearing the limits of what the original engine management system can cope with so a full mappable system is scheduled to be fitted after Oulton Park (race 3), this will enable more accurate metering of fuel and monitoring of the essential engine lifesigns.

While the first part of the season is underway and the new engine management system installed a new engine is being built to a higher specification - the aim is to have this in place for the last four races of the year. The power output target is nearly a 100% increase over the current engine and should make for some very entertaining driving. It should also enable the car to meet the demands of running in the second championship pencilled in for this year, the Castle Combe Special GT series. With laptimes just off from the all time outright Castle Combe lap record the series is full of very fast, dedicated cars and while the 2004 car is already quick it needs to take in a whole new level of performance before it can hope to compete head to head.