There is a massive amount of engineering involved in creating a groundbreaking car like the Nissan DeltaWing, set to either revolutionize auto racing, or fail spectacularly at the 24 Hours of Le Mans. There is remarkably less investment in Top Gear's homegrown DeltaWing, but we love it anyway.
The car show/magazine is building its own road-going version of the racing prototype set to run in its own category at this year's Le Mans 24 Hour. Understandably, the Top Gear design isn't exactly of the same standards as that of the professional racing team. That said, the DeltaWing team had years to gestate their design and Top Gear had six weeks and a few of Nissan's press photos for inspiration.
These pictures are from two weeks and about 160 hours into the project. The front is a Westfield Se7en kit car running space saver tires and that's about as standard as the car gets. The headlights are from a Peugeot 207, the steering rack comes off an old Hillman Imp, the rear deck is a mix of Fiat 126 and Morris 1000, and the rear axle is from a Ford Escort. Whereas the racing DeltaWing has bespoke components filling up a budget in the millions, Top Gear went shopping at the junkyard.
The two cars do share one thing: they both have 1.6 liter four-cylinder engines, though we suspect the mid-mounted Nissan unit is slightly more powerful than the old Ford motor up front in the Top Gear car.
There's still a lot left to do for Andy Saunders, the man who is actually building the Top Gear Delta Wing and long time Jalop hero. He describes his work on the car in few words. "I'm pissing in the wind a bit here," Saunders says of making the side pods.
Still, we can't wait to see the car on the road and on TV, whenever TGUK manages to get itself back on the air.
You can see Top Gear's full shoot, along with a few more pictures and descriptions here, on their website.
(Hat tip to Mikeado and teampenske3 - sponsored by Verizon!)
Photo Credit: Top Gear