The Borgward Hansa 1500 RS emerged from the 1,000-kilometer race at the Nürburgring as class winners, and finished third overall behind a 4.5-litre Ferrari and a Jaguar.
Legendary was the 1953 Carrera Panamericana, with two Hansa 1500 RS race cars competing against the Porsche Spyders. It would have ended with a class victory –if the leading Borgward had not exceeded the stage’s three-hour time limit by a mere seven seconds. That same year, Borgward entered two cars in the 24 Heures du Mans.
Borgward also documented notable successes in touring car racing, including a particularly remarkable achievement in 1954, when a more-or-less standard-equipped Isabella finished the Carrera Panamericana in sixth place in the European touring car class.
In 1956, Borgwards’s racing division in Bremen set about developing a 1.5-liter four-valve engine, based on the Isabella, with fuel injection and dual ignition. The resulting 150hp engine powered the Borgward RS to numerous class victories. In 1959, this model was ideal for the newly established 1.5-liter Formula Two. Stirling Moss was driving a Cooper-Borgward and recorded four wins in the first four races. The famous racecar driver is quoted as saying that Formula Two meant little to him at the time – until he sat in the Cooper with the Borgward engine.