Sun Red SR21

The story of the Sun Red SR21 begins back in 2000 at the Geneva Motor Show at the Hispano Suiza stand. The legendary automaker—seriously, its pre-Second World War designs are incredible—was sort of back thanks to Mazel Group Engineering, a capable Spanish engineering and design consultancy.

As a show of their capabilities, the Hispano Suiza (note the lack of hyphen; this was to stay clear of trademark issues…apparently) HS21 shown was a Veyron-like supercar, powered by a "BMW-Judd" V10 engine.

Shown again, updated, in 2004, the road-going supercar design is the compliment to the, confusingly-named HS21-GTS, which was confusingly first shown back in 2002—a longer, lower race car powered by the same BMW-derived Judd V10 engine. The goal? To make six cars and to compete at Le Mans.

Its tube frame steel chassis would have been par for the course in the top-level GT class, but a quick glance at the entry list for Le Mans a year later in 2003 shows the Prodrive-supported Ferrari 550-GTS Maranello finishing ahead of the works Chevrolet Corvette team—a fast group of cars by any measure. I'm not sure the HS21-GTS would have placed well.

Maybe due to a rethink of their strategy as a race car constructor, the car was next seen again in 2007 as the Sun Red SR21, entered into the International Open GT Championship, an innovative Spanish-based series created in 2006.

I say innovative because, well, without the name brand of Le Mans or the backing of the FIA, it's hard to get attention—so they pride themselves on being the only GT series where performance adjustments are not made with changes to the technical attributes of a car, but through a time handicap to be served in pits during mandatory driver change.

This keeps racing close, and relatively inexpensive: show up with a safe car and they don't care about engines and air restrictors and endplates so much…but will make you wait in the pits if your performance is too great. Dominated by Ferrari since its inception, the series has seen everything from GT-prepared Chevrolet Camaros and Dodge Vipers do battle against the latest race cars from McLaren, Ferrari, and Porsche.

Here, too, the SR21 hasn't found much success. pegs horsepower from its 4.0-litre V8 at around 500 and its gearbox as a 6-speed sequential from Hewland, but beyond knowing it was designed around the FIA GT2 regulations (and not allowed to race because they hadn't made any road cars), there's sadly precious little info to find on the car.

What do you think it looks like? Maybe a Spanish Saleen S7? Sadly, it wasn't sexy enough as a road car to attract customers, and not fast enough as a race car to bring home trophies. Last race photos I've seen of the car were from 2008, though similar vehicles have been seen on small European hill climb events…with the Judd V10 screaming away!

Before I forget: If you're in to slot cars, apparently you can order a Sun Red SR21 for your collection. 

That said, Sun Red and Mazel are still hard at work developing new race cars…


* You may notice some images with a watermark containing "Design Cube"—this is the name of Mazel's design consultancy