Koenigsegg One:1 sought top speed record but earned most expensive crash title instead

Article by Andrew Christian, on July 30, 2016

Following the crash in 2015 that killed one spectator, the Nurburgring officials imposed speed limits around the circuit and lap records were officially banned. The tragedy on the North Loop or the Nordschleife has left a traumatic experience not only for drivers but for spectators as well. However, just recently, Nurburgring officials lifted the speed limits after several safety upgrades were installed in the track. This was certainly good news for several automakers on the hunt for fame and glory.

One of the manufacturers who took the opportunity to strut their stuff once again on the infamous race circuit is Swedish high-performance sports cars manufacturer Koenigsegg Automotive AB. Once they received the go signal to gallop away at the Nurburgring, Koenigsegg released the Kraken – the $2.85 million hypercar One:1. The hypercar is one of the most expensive cars in the world and is powered by a twin-turbocharged V8 engine. It can cough up a whopping 1,341 horsepower and launch from 0 to 60 mph in only 2.5 seconds. The One:1 is the Swedish automaker’s attempt in breaking the Porsche 918’s 6:57 lap time.

There are only seven Koenigsegg One:1’s in the face of the Earth which makes it one of the rarest cars in the world. However, this number has further decreased after one of its units crashed into a fence in one section of the Fuchsröhre track. Just after lifting the lap record ban and speed limits, it is unfortunate that another accident took place at the Nurburgring.

According to Koenigsegg, the accident happened because of a fault in the One:1’s anti-lock braking system (ABS) wheel sensor signal. The car experienced a front axle brake lock up while it was at approximately 106 mph through the Fuchsröhre track. It then crashed into a fence at Adenauer Forst. The impact caused the car to fly through the air, turning 180 degrees before landing on its left rear wheel. Ouch.

Skid marks and a charred rear end are grim reminders of the accident. Apparently, the rear end of the car was on fire for a while because of the contact between its carbon fiber rear panels and exhaust after landing on its left rear wheel. Fortunately, the driver was quick enough to extinguish the flames thanks to a fire extinguisher inside the car. On the other hand, the skid marks are evidence that the car’s ABS was not working as it should have. A small yellow light at the center of the dashboard usually lights up to warn the driver of the impending danger but is difficult to see for a driver wearing a helmet and concentrating on the road. So lo and behold, the inevitable happened so when the driver triggered the ABS, it locked the front axle of the car launching it into the air. Fortunately, the ABS was also designed to allow the rear wheels to spin in the rare event of a front lock-up so that the car continued to run at a straight line instead of spinning out of control.

The said One:1 was wrecked beyond repair what with the cracked carbon fiber and its fenders in bad shape. Fortunately, the safety systems worked just fine because the driver was released from the hospital on the same day. No civilians were hurt and there was no fuel, oil or hydraulic leaks which is a good thing.

This is by far the most expensive crash that has happened at the Green Hell. Koenigsegg’s engineers will keep themselves busy once again to configure and update their Active Systems Warning notification so that the next time a problem will occur with its ABS, it won’t be as devastating as this one.

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