Praga's R1 is a Czech track slayer

Published: 22 January 2021

 Praga 2021 teased
 2020 car was Britcar champion
 Expect improved aero, and focus on endurance racing

In late 2020, Praga released some titillating images of its improved 2021 R1 racecar. Now in the new year, it’s graced us with the full reveal – images and specifications. And my word, what a tremendous looking machine.

Tell me about the upgrades

Essentially everything is new. Working our way upwards, the carbon fibre monocoque is new, and features Zylon – a polymer that has a higher tensile strength than Kevlar – panels to increase safety for the drivers. The car’s new floor and splitter channel smooth underfloor airflow to the tweaked diffuser.

Though the new R1 looks basically the same as the 2020 car, the two models don’t share a single common body panel. The subtle alterations have made the new car more slippery, but with 15% more downforce than before.

Praga R1 nose

Because it has more downforce and is the third of the weight of a hippopotamus (a mere 643kgs), the new R1 can generate up to 3G in the corners.

Power comes from a 2.0-litre turbocharged engine from Renault Alpine developing 365bhp and 302 lb ft of torque.

Any cool racing tech?

In this area, Praga have focused on improving driving feel. The pedals are adjustable, and the suspension has also been fiddled with. Meanwhile, the engine management system has had software tweaks, so now the R1 has improved throttle response and a smoother power curve.

Praga R1 interior

In the pursuit of becoming an even better endurance racer, Praga have expanded the new R1’s fuel tank by 50 per cent, now with a 92-litre volume. There are new headlights too.

2021 R1s are already being delivered to UK customers and twelve Pragas will be racing in a dedicated category in the Britcar Endurance Championship. If last season’s results are anything to go by, the new menacing R1 should be quite a performer in 2021.

By Chris Williams

Bauer automotive content writer, and antipodean

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