Singer Vehicle Design Debuts ‘DLS’
Renowned automotive specialist, Singer Vehicle Design, has debuted its Dynamics and Lightweighting Study (DLS) at the Goodwood Festival of Speed. A client-inspired collaboration with Williams Advanced Engineering – part of the Williams Grand Prix Engineering Group – and a number of other technical partners, the DLS project was first announced in November 2017 with the aim of delivering the most advanced air-cooled Porsche 911 ever conceived. Billed as ‘a relentless pursuit of excellence through a lightweight philosophy’, the collaborative effort has also seen input from legendary Porsche men Hans Mezger and Norbert Singer.
The DLS project began when Singer client and Porsche enthusiast, Scott Blattner, requested lightweight and high-performance enhancements to his 1990 964. To meet the goals defined in collaboration with Scott, Singer and Williams formed a technical partnership to engineer a selection of restoration and modification solutions. Singer Vehicle Design says that DLS cars are reserved for ‘a few very special customers’.
Each area of the Study has been examined for weight saving and increased torsional stiffness, full carbon fibre bodywork ensures every panel is unique while chassis balance has been improved by moving the engine forward and relocating certain components to the front storage area. According to Singer the 500hp 4.0-litre normally aspirated engine represents a step forward in advanced air-cooled engine development.
Founder and Creative Director of Singer Vehicle Design, Rob Dickinson, commented: “The Dynamics and Lightweighting Study has been years in the making. To see the results, representing the ongoing pursuit of our client’s vision for their ultimate air-cooled 911, is so exciting. We’ve worked relentlessly to present a machine that visually celebrates the past while acknowledging the future – both inside and out. It’s our fourth year at this incredible event and we’re thrilled to be back at Festival of Speed for its twenty-fifth anniversary and to wish Porsche a very happy 70th birthday.”
Engine & Chassis
The Dynamics and Lightweighting Study features a 500hp 4.0-litre normally aspirated air-cooled Porsche flat-six engine developed by Williams Advanced Engineering with technical advice and consultancy from Porsche engineer, Hans Mezger. With four titanium valves per cylinder and dual overhead cams, the engine revs to a heady 9,000rpm, it uses magnesium and lightweight materials to reduce mass. In addition, it features lightweight throttle bodies with F1-inspired upper and lower injectors to enhance performance and drivability, a unique oil system to improves lubrication and cooling.
A bespoke six-speed gearbox developed with Hewland uses magnesium casings with hollow shafts to reduce the rotating mass, the transmission is short to enable the engine to be positioned further forward. Williams Advanced Engineering assisted suspension development. A lightweight multi-link, double wishbone, front arrangement works in partnership with a lightweight, aluminium, rear trailing arm with integral brake cooling, bespoke dampers feature remote adjustment. The latest CCM-R carbon ceramic brake technology has been utilised in partnership with Brembo – lightweight brake discs and calipers are good for both road and track use.
In front of the brakes come lightweight 18-inch forged magnesium monobloc centre-lock wheels, developed for the study by BBS Motorsport. The high-strength aluminium and titanium centre-lock mechanism was developed by Williams Advanced Engineering. Wrapped around them are bespoke Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 tyres (245/35 front and 295/30 rear) comprising a bi-compound asymmetric design with Variable Contact Patch 3.0 technology. Working with Bosch, the DLS project has given birth to specially calibrated ABS, traction and electronic stability control systems – switchable driving modes afford the option for these to be turned off completely. Lightweight air-conditioning and heating systems also appear.
Partner Williams Advanced Engineering worked with technical advice and consultancy from Norbert Singer on the advanced aerodynamics of the DLS. Through computational fluid dynamics (CFD) analysis the parties worked on a number of areas designed to ensure optimum air-flow, working to eliminate front axle lift via redesigning the front oil-cooler intake and venting, together with the addition of a new front splitter. Air is channelled over the roof and down the rear window towards an optimised ducktail rear spoiler and diffuser to generate downforce at the backend. Ram-air intakes and rear deck-lid venting aid the cooling of the engine.
In the cabin, Recaro has specially designed a lightweight carbon fibre sports seat while MOMO has developed a carbon-fibre steering wheel to the same brief. A raised manual shifter with an exposed titanium and magnesium linkage combine with drilled carbon and titanium pedals and a carbon fibre clad instrument panel(shift lights are integrated into the tacho) to provide a purposeful vibe.
Goodwood FoS 2018
At Goodwood a 1989 DLS vehicle finished in Heart Attack Red with a Black interior will take part in the Michelin Supercar Paddock Hillclimb Run – we expect Marino Franchitti to perform driving duties. A second 1990 vehicle finished in Parallax White with a Norfolk Yellow interior will accompany six further Porsche 911s, all reimagined by Singer, in a static display on the Cartier lawn outside Goodwood House. The six reimagined vehicles are all UK-based 1991 Porsche 964s and include the Goodwood Commission, London Commission, Surrey Commission, Dorset Commission, Monaco Commission and the Manchester Commission. The DLS will later be showcasedin North America at Pebble Beach during Monterey Car Week which takes place in late August.