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On this day: the inaugural race of the new Nürburgring in 1984

12 May 2024

Today marks 40 years since the inaugural race of the new Nürburgring in 1984.

The race of champions saw 20 Mercedes-Benz 190 E 2.3-16 cars open the new Nürburgring, with Ayrton Sennon winning ahead of Niki Lauda and Carlos Reutemann. Senna went on to become Formula One World Champion in 1988, 1990 and 1991. His 190 E 2.3-16 from the inaugural race at Nürburgring in 1984 is now part of the Mercedes-Benz corporate collection.

The largely standard 16-valve sport saloons were equipped with the ‘R-package’ for the race, which included Recaro seats, six-point seat belts, rollover bars, a shorter rear-axle with matching speedometer, a smaller 380-millimeter steering wheel, and an open exhaust.

The thrilling race between 20 Nürburgring champions in 20 identical sports cars was a memorable way to celebrate. The illustrious driver line-up was organised by Mercedes-Benz, and included numerous Formula One world champions and Le Mans winners.

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