How did the dp1 come to be? It all started with the proverbial napkin sketch. Actually, a thousand sketches came before it, but this one suddenly made sense. The pile of car components that have been spinning in my head in 3D for years at once landed, each in its place, and the hastily drawn lines confirmed it. Yes, this might actually work. Just the driver and the engine, wrapped in as small a car as practical, with All-Wheel-Drive to ensure the power is converted to thrust and not just tire smoke and noise.
Every car enthusiast has at some point imagined the 'perfect' car. Of course perfection is a very subjective thing. Most such visions when held up to reality and what's already been done quickly lose focus. There are many very competent cars out there and it is increasingly more difficult to come up with something that's clearly better or at least different, even subjectively. So usually the dream falls victim to instant gratification and one just goes out and buys something that's close enough. I have done this myself - the list of my toy purchases is long and varied. Every such purchase was a dream fulfillment in its own way (not always obviously so), from my very first rusted-out Fiat X1/9 to the supposedly unobtainable Elise S190 years later. Each became a valuable first-hand learning experience. Collectively my past cars and my experiences driving them on and off the track have created a solid base of reference that I could use not only to judge a dream but to shape it. The full list is on my site for those interested.
So now, looking at the sketch, I knew I had something. Something worth pursuing. Something worthy of the sacrifices to come. The day was May 26, 2002.