Car Culture / Featured Car

Singer Vehicle Design – Building The Ultimate Porsche 911

Acute attention to detail, vast technical knowledge, love of everything Porsche 911, and a healthy dose of patience are among the attributes that go into every Singer build. You gotta love these guys. Their company motto is “Restored – Reimagined – Reborn” and when they reimagine it’s with performance in mind.

I like saying Singer is to the Porsche 911 what Icon is to the classic Ford Bronco. The vehicles they build looks like a 100-point restoration but beneath the pristine paint is a modern performance rocket on wheels. Singer has been undertaking a design philosophy dubbed the Dynamics and Lightweighting Study (DLS).

Singer is working with Williams Advanced Engineering, part of the Williams Grand Prix Engineering Group, and select other technical partners with the common mission of creating the most advanced air-cooled Porsche 911s in the world. Two 911s built under this regime will be appearing at the 2018 Goodwood Festival of Speed, July 12-15, in West Sussex, England. The car featured here was commissioned by Porsche aficionado Scott Blattner. It’s a 1990 Porsche 964 in Parallax White with Norfolk Yellow interior. Let’s check it out.

Engine

The car runs a normally aspirated, air-cooled Porsche flat-six, developed by Williams Advanced Engineering with technical advice and consultancy from Hans Mezger. It displaces 4.0-liters and its dual overhead cam heads sport four valves per cylinder… the valves are titanium and spin willingly to 9,000 rpm where 500 horsepower is realized. Singer uses magnesium and lightweight materials throughout to reduce mass and the powerplant is fitted with lightweight throttle bodies with F1-inspired upper and lower injectors to enhance performance and drivability.

Aero

Here’s another of the many places Singer’s partnership with Williams Advanced Engineering pays dividends. Along with Norbert Singer, every surface on the car was re-assessed via computational fluid dynamics (CFD) analysis. This examination resulted in the elimination of front axle lift through the redesign of the front oil-cooler intake and venting. These mods work in conjunction with a new front splitter in the name of aerodynamic slipperiness. The team also performed what it calls “Mass Efficiency and Core Optimization” which focuses on the torsional stiffness of the chassis and moving items like the engine forward or re-positioning other items in the name of weight balance. As you’d expect, carbon fiber is the go-to material.

Duck

We really appreciate how airflow over the roof and through to the rear of the car has been addressed. In their own words, Singer and Williams have “optimized of one of the most iconic aerodynamic devices of the twentieth century – the ducktail spoiler.” The problem was too much air was flowing over the ducktail spoiler instead of onto it. So the team created a roof-channel and roof/rear window spoiler that redirects flow to an optimized ducktail to generate rear downforce.

Duct

Singer and Williams are focusing on air cooled engines so the optimization of engine intake and cooling performance was a prime concern. The duo’s approach is pretty sweet. Cooling and air injection is facilitated through side-window ram-air intakes and rear deck-lid venting. The idea, its execution, and the materials used are all next level.

Cabin

The interior of the Goodwood DLS is a sight to see. It’s where the reimagination takes its most impactful form. The cabin features a number of products developed specifically for the Singer DLS program. The car’s lightweight carbon fiber bucket seats were specially designed with Recaro while Singer and Momo teamed up to develop a carbon fiber steering wheel.

For us, the raised, manual gear-shift with exposed titanium and magnesium linkage steals the show. We love the raw mechanical aura of this treatment and how carbon fiber itself just wasn’t light enough so Singer put a hole in the shift knob. But the custom gauges, custom carbon fiber dash, and the overall quality and high level of refinement of the upholstery and interior in general are also quite impressive.

Lightweighting

Some of the other featherweight systems on the car include aluminum suspension pieces, magnesium BBS wheels, carbon ceramic Brembo brakes, magnesium casings and hollow shafts on/in the Hewland transmission. Everywhere you turn Singer has taken steps to lighten the load and the results are a car that has that sum is greater than its parts vibe we all love.

These are just some of the features of the Goodwood DLS Porsche. You can see Singer DLS cars in person at Monterey Car Week beginning August 23.

 

 

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