Koenigsegg, the swedish carmaker has issued an official, and a detailed statement about the One:1 that crashed in the Nurburgring. The car sustained severe damages, but the driver was unhurt. The statement comes after a detailed analysis of the car, back at their factory.
According to the carmaker, the One:1 experienced front axle brake lock up while travelling at approximately 170km/h, before hitting the fence at 110km/h. The impact launched the car into the air for about 22 meters and the car landed on its left rear wheel.
Upon impact, safety systems like airbags and fuel shutoff worked, as they were designed to do. There was a bit of fire on the rear section of the car, which was caused due to carbon fibre panels coming in contact with the exhaust of the One:1.
The whole scenario was traced down to a faulty ABS sensor in the front left wheel. This fault would have immediately been highlighted, as data analysis showed (it did come on) on the dashboard, but the speed the car was travelling and the helmet worn by the driver would have made it impossible, or difficult for the driver to notice.
The driver would not have noticed the difference in braking, since he was not in a zone where he needed to brake hard enough for the ABS to be triggered. The corner where the crash took place was the first opportunity for the driver to notice any difference.
Koenigsegg cars come with a back-up ABS feature, which let the rear wheels continue rotating, instead of locking up along with the front wheels. This helps the car continue in a straight line instead of spinning out and that is precisely what happened, according their tests.
Engineers back in Koenigsegg spent several hours replicating the incident on a simulator, after disconnecting the left front wheel ABS sensor, and the results were exactly the same and consistent as to what happened at the Nurburgring with the actual car.
Modern Koenigseggs already have an Active Systems Warning regime in place, which is well ahead of legal requirements. This system monitors all active systems in the car like the front aero flaps underneath the bumper, active ride height system, active rear wing and our active rebound dampening. If the sytem detects a problem, the car will automatically be restricted to 100km/h until the issue is resolved by the company.
Now, the company plans on integrating the ABS system to the Active Systems Warning as soon as possible. This would make the car safer.