When IMSA created new rules in the early 1980s to break Porsche’s stronghold on Group C racing, the rise of cars like this March 85G is exactly what they were hoping for. It’s Porsche 962 engine, on the other hand, was another matter entirely. By 1985, Porsche’s dominance of international prototype sports car racing was no secret and, in North America, the rules were changed to allow independent manufacturers a better chance of being competitive. Race car manufacturer March quickly realized the opportunity to build a chassis for the IMSA GTP series and tapped a young Adrian Newey to design a new car. The resulting March 82G boasted a rigid aluminum honeycomb chassis, unique bodywork and an engine bay well suited to just about any engine a car owner would care to install. The first race for the 82G was the 24 Hours of Daytona where the Chevrolet V8 powered March claimed the pole position and ran quickly before being sidelined with transmission problems. The remarkable turn of speed, however, was enough to prove the 82G’s viability as a race car. Orders for the car soon started rolling in and variations of the 82G won the IMSA title in both ’83 and ‘84. This car is one of just four March’s built to accept Porsche’s turbocharged 962 engine and as such is both fast and rare. Called a 85G for its 1985 build date, the March was campaigned in the US by privateer John Kalagian for the ’85 season, and was then sold to Richard Cleare for the 1986 season. Under Cleare’s ownership the car was campaigned throughout Europe and won it’s class at the 1986 running of the 24 Hours of Le Mans. Since then the car has returned to the United States and enjoyed a comprehensive and well documented restoration. It has been campaigned in one race since completion—the 2009 Monterey Historics—and comes with a large collection of spares. Fast, historic, well-prepared and possessing great provenance, this March 85G will make a welcome addition to any collection and will likely prove to be a fierce competitor on track. Find the March for sale here on eBay in Torrance, California with the starting bid at $324,000.
The Secret Porsche – 1985 March 85G
August 6, 2012 by 1 Comment