We know you all are wondering what it would take to turn an aging Formula One-style Ford car into a street legal machine. German citizen Christian Maier decided to find out. The 40-year-old spent several years working on the retired race car, and finally got to realize his dream.
Now, after four years of work, the racer can take to the streets... and there's nothing the fuzz can do about it. Turning it legal was no small challenge, even for Maier. Maier, a former driver in the German Formula Ford series, got safety and technology consulting group TÜV on board to help out. The first words he heard from them were unpleasant. When Maier asked why his Formula car should not get road approval, the representative from TÜV could only say, "It will be very expensive."
Bumpers were built into the front wing and rear wing. Retractable headlights emerge from the front of the body, with new heavy-duty plastic wheelwells at the front and rear. Turn indicators are attached to the top of the front wells, with rear indicators and taillights attached to the sides of the rear wells. A hand brake has been installed in the cockpit, as well as a horn, and light switches. New features resulted in a larger curb weight of 525 kg (1,157 lbs).
With the extra weight comes a need for extra power. His first step was replacing the 130 hp engine. Although it does not sound like a lot of power, Formula Ford cars rarely weighed over 420 kg (926 lbs). Sub-five second 0-100 km/h times are common on the vehicles, which usually top out around 230 km/h (143 mph). The car's new engine is a four-cylinder 204 hp turbo from an Opel Calibra that powers the car to a 250 km/h (155 mph) top speed. The vehicle has a tubular chassis, fiberglass body, a dual suspension.
Maier had always wanted to do something with the car, which did little more than collect dust in his attic. Although Maier is no doubt happy he can stop laboring over the car just to get it to work, his wife Doris is probably a bit happier. When the reporter called Christian Maier "reasonable," Doris just looked at him and laughed.