This Machine Kills Ferraris

What company competes in go karts, Pirelli World Challenge, Le Mans, IndyCar, Formula One, and basically any series anywhere? I bet you said BMW. You’re wrong. It’s Honda and Acura. And they invest in things like this, the TLX Pirelli World Challenge car. And it’s astonishingly cool.

(Full Disclosure: Acura invited us out to Gingerman Raceway in Michigan to drive the Realtime Racing Pirelli World Challenge car. I was faster than most of the turtles on the infield.)

For as long as there have been Acuras, Peter Cunningham and his RealTime Racing team have had them on track. From Integras to the TSX, they’ve been there the whole time. Now, they are racing the TLX, a car that you might not immediately think to put on a race track.


But the work that Acura and RealTime have done on this car is rather amazing. The engine has a base in the LMP2 engine Honda uses, but also has parts from the stock 3.5 in the TLX. It’s mounted longitudinally, not transversely, and is pushed so far back that you don’t see it when the hood opens. It’s all-wheel drive, like the road car, and is the only AWD car in the field.

Illustration for article titled This Machine Kills Ferraris

What’s it like to drive? And why is working for Honda’s motorsports effort so great? That’s what we went to find out.

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Is this TLX even successful? I remember the Realtime Acuras doing well but I don’t remember hearing of any recent success. I can very safely say it isn’t the best looking car on the grid.