Speed limits were imposed on parts of the Nordschleife following a fatal crash in a VLN endurance race back in March, when a factory-entered Nissan GT-R being driven by Jann Mardenborough took off on a high-speed crest and left the track, killing a spectator. The limits have stayed in place during manufacturer testing, the infamous "tourist driving" sessions, and also subsequent racing. And now Nurburgring GmbH has confirmed to Car and Driver that they won’t be waived for manufacturers wanting to try to set record times, even if they take exclusive use of the whole track.
“Following the tragic accident of 28 March 2015, the German Motorsport Association (DMSB) introduced speed limits for races at the Nurburgring," said NÃ¼rburgring CEO Carsten Schumacher in an official statement. “Capricorn NÃ¼rburgring GmbH has decided to extend these speed limits to other activities on the Nordschleife, which is why record drives are currently not permitted on the NÃ¼rburgring Nordschleife."
The first automaker to come up against the ban is Koenigsegg, which was on the verge of trying to lower the overall record with the One:1. As we reported last year, company founder Christian von Koenigsegg was convinced that the 1341-hp hybrid megacar would be able to slice a “very significant chunk" from the 918’s lap time, although he also admitted that he hated the need to have to prove the potency of his company’s products with a Nordschleife record. The Swedish company had been planning to make a record attempt in the next few days, but we believe the plan has now been put on ice.*
Of course, there’s a justifiable view that Nordschleife record claims have been running out of control in the last few years, especially when it comes to the number of subcategories that manufacturers seem determined to claim as their own. In recent months, Porsche has announced an SUV record for the Cayenne Turbo S and Honda a front-drive record for the Civic Type R. A Lamborghini test pilot also drove the new non-hybrid Aventador SV to within three seconds of the 918’s record, an attempt that was apparently made after Mardenborough’s crash and which could therefore be the last.
At the Detroit show this year, Porsche’s engineering boss Wolfgang Hatz told us that the company would respond to any rival trying to claim the overall record, and he said that the 918 still had the ability to go faster.
This decision spares us from the prospect of the continuation of that arms race, although it’s likely that some revisions to the track design to slow cars in the fastest sections ultimately will replace official speed limits. Car And Driver