This Mid-engined, Rotary-powered Racer Is a Delightful Oddity

·2 min read
Photo credit: Bring A Trailer
Photo credit: Bring A Trailer

The name of the Diasio D962R implies that it might be something like a scale replica of a Porsche 962. Unfortunately, it looks more like a Jaguar XJR-14 shot through a fisheye lens. While that is far from the car's only drawback, it is the only drawback that is not itself a feature.

Photo credit: Bring A Trailer
Photo credit: Bring A Trailer

The Diasio D962R is a fiberglass track day car, and a particularly odd one at that. Where other small-scale fiberglass racers might go for motorcycle engines or Honda K-series power, the Diasio uses a mid-mounted, turbocharged Mazda rotary engine, the 2-rotor 13B-REW. Official numbers on cars produced in such low volume are elusive, but one Diasio customer reported back in 2013 that his car made 240 horsepower at the wheels.

That same owner claimed the car weighed just 1,578 lb. Including a driver.

That makes the D962R an interesting prospect on any racing track in the world. The commitment to lightness, combined with reasonably modern aerodynamics, mid-engined balance, and more-than-adequate power, leaves a car that will be among the most capable at any track day, club race, or autocross it could ever grace. Add in the strange sounds and quirks associated with a rotary engine and it becomes the most unique, too.

Photo credit: Bring A Trailer
Photo credit: Bring A Trailer

This particular Diasio D962R is finished in the Miller High Life livery that a particularly notable 962C wore en route to the overall win at the 1989 24 Hours of Daytona. While it illustrates just how little this car actually looks like the legendary Porsche, it fits well on any mid-engined track car.

The car is listed for sale on Bring A Trailer, where it is bid up to just $7800 with three days remaining. Another Diasio listed on the site sold for $37,000 earlier this year, still a relative performance bargain in comparison to any more traditional historic racing car.

Disclaimer: Bring a Trailer is owned by Road & Track’s parent company, Hearst Autos.

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