Famed race car driver Ken Block and the Skunk Works at Hoonigan unveiled Monday in Los Angeles its newest creation: a purpose-built, 1,400-horsepower, Porsche 911 dubbed "Hoonipigasus." The extremely pink Porsche will compete at the 2022 Pikes Peak International Hill Climb (PPIHC) in June with Block as its pilot. Along with Huntington Beach-based tuning and motorsports outfit BBi Autosport, Hoonigan and Block will compete in the renowned race up a mountain in Colorado in the hyper-competitive, open class with other purpose-built contenders.
This year's PPIHC is the event's 100th running and Block's first time racing in its top-spec class. Street artist Trevor Andrew, aka "Guccighost," designed the bright and wild livery for the special event. Even if the high wing doesn't stand out at the June race—many of the competitors use extreme aerodynamic elements to push the thin, mountain air—the pink livery certainly will.
"Initially, I was like 'Hey, let's call it the Hoonipig,' it's like the Hoonicorn, but it's a Porsche, so we'll call it the pig," said Brian Scotto, co-founder of Hoonigan. The race car that debuted Monday night channels the legendary Porsche 917/20 "Pink Pig" that raced at the 1971 24 Hours of Le Mans.
"Then we started talking to our friends at Mobil One. If you know much about racing and Porsches, you know that the (Mobil One) Pegasus really lives well on the side of a 911. Then that relationship started to come together, and that's where it all grew into the 'Hoonipigasus,'" said Scotto.
Hoonigan and BBi Autosport said they aimed to build an overall winner at Pikes Peak, and it shows in the spec sheet.
"Mid-engine, 1,400 horsepower, all-wheel-drive, in a sub-2,400-pound car that generates almost 5,000 pounds of downforce. I don't know what more we could do to give Ken a weapon to go up and have a good time with," said Betim Berisha, founder of BBi Autosport. The car's massive horsepower output comes from a twin-turbo, 4.0-liter flat-six paired to a custom Sadev sequential six-speed transmission and features GPS-activated, height-adjusted suspension beneath its wheel arches.
The latter bit is especially impressive: BBi took GPS-integrated data gathered from their campaign at last year's event and factored it into the Hoonipigasus' suspension tuning. Depending upon where the car is on the course, the system can make automatic adjustments to maximize overall grip.
The challenge ahead is especially daunting. At 12.42 miles long and with an elevation gain of 4,725 feet (finishing at 14,115 feet above sea level), PPIHC is one of the most demanding motorsports events in the world. Aerodynamics, horsepower, grip, and suspension tuning are crucial to success and require some massive specs to be competitive.
That's perhaps the appeal for racers like Block. PPIHC is one of the few remaining internationally acclaimed motorsports events where nearly anyone can show up with their own version of a high-altitude, mountain road storming beast, and potentially give big-money racers a run for their money. It's also one of the most dangerous motorsports events in the world, making legends of those who attempt the course's tricky, high-speed corners.
It will be cool to see how the 2022 installment of this prestigious, world-renowned event goes for Hoonigan and BBi Autosport. We also hope to learn more about Hoonipigasus' high-power engine and trick suspension in the coming weeks. Though, perhaps that's best left until after the event, considering they're competing in an open, nearly free-for-all class where there's no shortage of race-winning imagination among the competitors.