The iconic Panoz Esperante GTR-1 race car, a sports car endurance racing fan-favorite known for its gloriously loud American V8 and outrageous styling, is now included as part of the much-anticipated worldwide release of the racing simulation game Project CARS 2.

Available for PlayStation 4 system, Xbox One, and PC, Project CARS 2 takes the franchise and its fans into a blistering new era of motorsport racing simulation with the largest track roster ever seen on console, including 29 motorsport series, 180-plus cars from dozens of elite brands, and four full seasons of grip-altering weather across 140 revolutionary “living” tracks.

Coming as part of the Motorsport Pack content expansion, the 1997 Panoz Esperante GTR-1 was the first successful front-engine prototype race car in more than 30 years of motorsports. Designed by Adrian Reynard for entrepreneur Don Panoz’s newly founded Panoz Motor Sport Group, it laid the groundwork for two decades of highly successful international endurance sports car and open-wheel racing.

With its raucous 6.0-liter Ford-based V8 engine mounted in front of the driver, the Panoz Esperante GTR-1 competed in international endurance racing in various forms from 1997 to 2003 and proved successful in a field of rear-engine prototype competitors. One version, the 1998 Panoz Q9 GTR-1 Hybrid – affectionately known as Sparky – was the first successful modern hybrid race car and won its class at the 1998 Petit Le Mans at Road Atlanta. In all, the Panoz Esperante GTR-1 scored 20 podium finishes with five overall wins and nine class victories.

Panoz, a division of Green4U Technologies Inc., just completed its inaugural Pirelli World Challenge GT4/GTS Championship season racing the No. 50 Panoz Avezzano GT. Driver Ian James finished with 10 podiums in the last 12 races and six victories: two back-to-back wins at Road America, and one each at Mid-Ohio, Utah Motorsports Campus, the Circuit of the Americas, and Sonoma Raceway. The Avezzano GT race car is based on the new Panoz Avezzano sports car, the latest street-legal Panoz creation featuring a new fastback configuration, a new-generation aluminum chassis, and an all-new high-performance V8 and manual gearbox.

Panoz offers a street legal Panoz Esperante GTR-1 continuation version for customers desiring the ultimate in exclusivity. Based on the original Panoz Esperante GTR-1 Le Mans Homologation Special created in 1997-1998 to homologate the GTR-1 for the 24 Hours of Le Mans, Panoz can hand-build a continuation version to each customer’s requirements. Visit panoz.com for more information.

The Panoz Esperante GTR-1 is in the Motorsport Pack only available with the Season Pass (links below):

Project CARS 2 is now available for the PlayStation 4 computer entertainment system, XBOX One, and PC via STEAM®.

Lucy Smith

Author Lucy Smith

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