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MMER 2012 – The Machines

With the aim of proving that they got what it takes to survive the daunting 12-hour race, the Malaysia Merdeka Endurance Race had always attracted numerous participations from racing teams all over. And with these participations, a lot of impressive racing machines showed up with various setups and complex aerodynamics, instantly showing that they really mean business in crossing the checkered flag after a long and hard race.

Other than the Clearwater Ferrari 458, there was also another team running a 458 GT3 in the race. Although it was not as fast as the Clearwater’s racing machine, it did managed to put up a good show.

This year’s MMER was missing the loud and thunderous roar of the Craft Eurasia Racing Ford GT3 as they had made a jump from the American supercar to something more subtle yet properly quick for 2012; the Aston Martin Vantage. Even so, their brightly-colored livery still looks equally cool and not forgetting loud too.

A bunch of Lotuses had also showed up for the race, where besides of the FXPrimus’s Evora GT4, there were also a couple of Lotus 2-Elevens; one ran by FXPrimus and another one by Hankook, going through 12 hours of racing in an Exige S with its roof chopped off.

But these are among the uber-exotic machines that one would rarely see galloping down our roads. There were also some familiar faces running in the Touring Production class, and quite a number of them are the preferred weapon in attacking the Sepang circuit; Hondas. Other than the Type R Racing Team and the ST-Wangan buzzing around in the FD2R, there were also a number of entrants running the race in the Integra DC5s.

Other JDMs were also seen joining in the race like Wang Hin’s Toyota combo…

…and this sole Subaru, which was also the only AWD car in the race.

The track is also not the only place that one could spot some impressive automotive engineering. Especially in a big race like this, exploring the parking lot is a must, and how it really did had some great machines in store for those brave enough to go through the intense heat during the blistering noon.

Looking pretty good in black rather than the usual red, this F430 still had yet to look old even though the 458 Italia brings a whole new design language onto today’s Ferraris.

Also from Italy, some bulls were spotted sunbathing under the punishing heat. This 1st gen Gallardo is trying to have an updated look with the Balboni stripes running across it, which made it looked quite refreshing.

But the newest addition to the ranch does not need any stripes for a makeover as even in its showroom form, the Aventador LP 700-4 already has that fierce look serving as an early warning to those brave enough to pose a challenge.

Some British marquees had also turned up in the parking lot, like this lone Aston Martin DB9. Although it does house a V12 like the Aventador, the DB9 is in a class of its own where it ferries the occupants with comfortably as one of the classiest Grand Tourer available.

Lotuses had always preferred to stick together, and over here we have most of the modern Lotus lineup like the Elise, Exige and the Evora.

Fancy German machines? There were quite a number of them making an appearance in the form of dangerous sleepers. At first glance, one might not even notice the beasts these sedans are holding in. Take for example this Mercedes C63 AMG; it looks just like a normal sedan with four doors, but under the hood holds a 6.2-liter V8 that could produce a loud enough rumble to wake up the dead.

The same goes to Audi where their RS6 looks properly deceiving, especially with the estate version. But messing around with a 5.0-liter twin-turbo V10 car? Even if it has the same number of doors as a typical family car, the 570-horsepower residing under the hood will only allow you to see the set of LED tail lights for a few seconds before it disappears into the horizon.

There was also this lone silver R8, which had left just when the race had started for a few laps.

Surprisingly, there were not much Porsches around on that day. One was what it seems like a Porsche 964 with RUF emblems all over. Not being an expert in Porsches or RUFs, it is a bit hard to tell whether this is a real deal which means that it is a CTR Yellowbird, or just kitted with some RUF emblems.

Nevertheless, it does show that the Porsche’s simple design is still applicable in today’s automotive world, as this white 991 Carrera S demonstrates.

But just a few meters from the 991 sits this impressive form of automotive engineering, something that could only be achieved by a great deal of passion and expertise in setting a new yardstick of the limitations for a four-wheeled machine.

With a monstrous output of 1001-horsepower from a W16 engine, sits this massive Bugatti Veyron, seeking refuge from the sun under the shade. This massive monster, unlike the other flashy supercars like Ferrari or Lamborghini, somehow looks very simple and not that much of being aggressive or menacing. But all the minor details on the car was designed by a team consisting of both automotive and aeronautic engineers which had enabled the Veyron to reach an amazing top speed of over 400km/h.

Although MMER 2013 is still very far away, try to book the date in advance to attend this annual event as endurance racing brings a whole new and interesting experience to both the spectators and also the racing drivers. If you are looking forward in attending the event, head on to Sepang Circuit’s website to get hold of the particulars that could actually turn this into an experience that you will never forget.