Whether you’re searching for bargains or rarities, auctions open up interesting opportunities. You can even find something as unique as an Alfa Romeo BAT concept. And for those chasing boutique supercars, something new has just popped up. It’s called the Isdera Commendatore 112i, it’s a 1-of-1 car, and it has a Pagani Zonda engine.
Isdera designed the Commendatore 112i to race at Le Mans
It’s not unusual for racing to influence supercar and hypercar design. Such is the case with models like the McLaren Senna GTR and Mercedes-AMG One. However, even with track-focused supercars, there’s usually a layer of separation between factory racers and customer cars. That’s not quite the case with the 1993 Isdera Commendatore 112i.
‘Isdera’ is the abbreviated name of German firm Ingenieurbüro für Styling, Design und Racing, Classic Driver explains. Although the company isn’t very well-known, 2021 will mark its 39th anniversary. And its founder, Eberhard Schulz, built his first car, the Erator GTE, back in 1968.
That car earned him a job at Porsche, and later at German tuner B&B. There he helped design the Mercedes-Benz CW311 concept, a kind of 300SL Gullwing homage. Schulz wanted to put it into production, so he started his own company to do so, Road & Track explains. The production car was called the 1983 Isdera Imperator 108i, and it offered a range of Mercedes V8s.
For Isdera’s next car, though, Schulz wanted to go bigger. Larger engine, higher top speed, less drag, and so on, RM Sotheby’s reports. His motivation? Competing at the 24 Hours of Le Mans, The Drive reports. In essence, the Isdera Commendator 112i was designed as a homologation special.
A Pagani Zonda V12 is just the start of the Isdera Commendatore 112i’s racing features
The Isdera Commendatore 112i’s racing intentions start with its name. It’s in honor of Enzo Ferrari, aka ‘il Commendatore.’ And its spec sheet goes some way to back that name up.
Instead of a V8, the Isdera Commendatore 112i has a mid-mounted Mercedes-built 6.0-liter V12, Motor1 reports. It’s the same V12 that Pagani installed in the first Zonda, the C12, in 1999, R&T reports. However, Isdera gave it a few upgrades.
The original Pagani Zonda has 394 hp, Motor1 reports. But the Commendatore’s engine develops “in excess of 400 hp,” RM Sotheby’s reports. And while the Zonda C12 has a 5-speed manual, the 112i has a 6-speed manual developed by RUF, The Drive reports. Thanks to the extra gear and an upgraded flywheel, it has a top speed of 211 mph.
That top speed is also a product of the Isdera Commendatore 112i’s aerodynamic design and suspension. It has a specially-shaped windscreen wiper, and instead of conventional side mirrors, it has a “roof-mounted periscope mirror,” Motor1 reports. The Commendatore’s Bilstein suspension is based on the Porsche 928’s suspension, Classic Driver reports, but modified to drop by up to 3” at speed. As a result, the Isdera Commendatore 112i has a drag coefficient of 0.306.
For weight-savings purposes, the Commendatore has fiberglass body panels. It also rides on BBS wheels. Inside are Recaro seats, though the gauges are from Mercedes-Benz. And in another Porsche nod, the 112i’s pop-up headlights are from the 968.
It’s for sale
Unfortunately, Isdera only managed to build one Commendatore 112i before its funding ran out. And while the firm is still around, MotorAuthority reports, it’s not making any more Commendatores.
Luckily, the automaker is offering this singular model up for sale. It’s scheduled to cross RM Sotheby’s block during the Paris 2021 auctions, The Drive reports. The event starts on February 13, 2021.
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