From Panoz press: The recurring rumor is now put to rest. Don Panoz, the founder of Panoz Auto Development and the American Le Mans Series presented by Tequila Patrón, made it official today with the announcement of an exciting new and exclusive Panoz super sports car – the Abruzzi “Spirit of Le Mans.”
The formal unveiling will take place next month in France at the world famous 24 Hours of Le Mans auto race, an event the Panoz brand won in the GT2 class during 2006.
“We wanted to wait until Le Mans to release official photos of the car, but today we are providing a ‘teaser’ image of the Abruzzi ‘Spirit of Le Mans’ that hints at what the final car will be like,” Panoz said in making the announcement. “After seeing numerous illustrations posted on the Internet claiming to be the ‘Panoz Abruzzi’ – none of which have been accurate – I thought it was important to provide some factual information in advance of the actual unveiling.”
Panoz, who with his Panoz Motor Sports Group owns one of the most diversified motorsports companies in the world, also controls one of the few remaining small-volume sports car manufacturing companies – Panoz Auto Development. “We are truly excited about the Panoz Abruzzi – not only about the design and performance of the car – but by the whole concept it represents,” Panoz added. “The styling is inspired from a classic era when racers would literally drive their own cars to Le Mans to compete and then drive back home. However, the technology of the Panoz Abruzzi ‘Spirit of Le Mans’ is absolutely leading-edge. We will provide many more details about the concept and some very special elements surrounding this exciting new car next month at Le Mans.”
In making this announcement, Panoz referred to several groundbreaking technologies employed in the design and construction of the new vehicle. The unique body is constructed using “REAMS”® material technology – “REAMS®” standing for Recyclable Energy Absorbing Matrix System. This advanced body construction material and process has never before been utilized in a road car and offers unprecedented environmental, performance and structural advantages.
“TRIFECTA COOLING”® is an innovative development that improves both engine performance and efficiency. In addition to a typical high-efficiency radiator, there are stage two and stage three cooling systems that lower coolant temperature on both the inflow to and the outflow from the radiator. The Abruzzi also extensively employs LED lighting technologies, both functionally and stylistically.
The Abruzzi “Spirit of Le Mans” is currently undergoing early homologation and production testing, and the car will be unveiled at its “spiritual” home at the historic Circuit de la Sarthe in Le Mans, France during race week in June. By special arrangement with the Automobile Club de l’Ouest (ACO), the car will occupy center stage in the “village” at the track from June 7-13. Prior to the public unveiling, international media representatives will be invited to a preview approximately two days in advance of its introduction.
The Abruzzi “Spirit of Le Mans” is being produced by Panoz Auto Development, located in Hoschton, Ga. “We are no strangers to pioneering new and unique concepts and materials in building great sports cars,” added Dan Panoz, President of Panoz Auto Development. “We are well known for 20 years of manufacturing and selling exclusive, limited-volume, high-performance automobiles.”
Panoz Auto Development produces leading-edge, fully certified automobiles and is best known for the first US-manufactured AIV (Aluminum Intensive Vehicle) - the Panoz AIV Roadster. The Panoz Esperante body and chassis also extensively employs aluminum for performance, safety and efficiency. The Panoz Esperante GTLM earned world-famous stature as a race car by winning the GT2 category at both the Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring and the 24 Hours of Le Mans in a single year – 2006.