This Kremer Porsche 962 was a recent visitor to the service workshop at JZM Porsche in St. Albans, Hertfordshire. Despite my spending at least one day a week with the JZM crew, I missed it, but am working on future visiting rights.
Everyone knows about the Porsche 962: super successful Group C racer that claimed abundant silverware for owners with the nuts to drive them properly. However, a number of customers were unhappy with Porsche’s version of the 962 and decided to do things their own way.
Formula One of the time was breaking new ground with composite tubs, but Porsche stuck to single-skin aluminium monocoque. When Kremer drivers Manfred Winkelhock and Jo Gartner were both killed in 962s – Mosport 1985 and Le Mans 1986 respectively – Kremer contacted John Thompson in the UK and had him build a stronger aluminium honeycomb tub with composite inserts and bodywork.
Scratch-built Kremer 962s using Thompson’s much stiffer tubs were badged as 962 CK6s, and Thompson went on to build full composite 962 chassis’ for Brun Racing. Despite 962 variants running well into the 1990s, Jo Gartner was the last man to be killed at Le Mans until Allan Simonsen’s death last year.
Flying slightly blind here, I’m half guessing at this being Kremer 962 CK6 09, one of the last Kremer 962s built, although it could be chassis 05. Shown on the JZM Hunter chassis alignment ramp, it’s fitted with Volk Racing centrelock wheels, which were chosen by many 962 teams. CK6-09 enjoyed an interesting career. Built specifically for the Le Mans 24-Hours, it raced in 1991, ’92 and ’93, with a highest placed finish of 11th overall.
Manuel Reuter’s name can be seen on the door. While not a household word outside of Germany, Manuel enjoyed sportscar success, twice winning Le Mans and racing 962s for much of his career. The 1992 Interserie Division 1 champion in a Kremer K7, he also raced DTM for Opel and was a DTM TV commentator too.
How many Porsche 962s were built? Depends who you read and how you add up the numbers. Counting later derivatives, it is certainly more than three figures.