The BMW M3 GTR features in the rFactor VLN 2005 mod
Image credit: ISI

VLN 2005 for rFactor: The Ultimate Sim Racing Endurance Mod?

Racing on the Nürburgring is a challenge at the best of times. But in the VLN 2005 mod for rFactor, immersion is off the scale and traffic is a thrill. Find it on RaceDepartment now!

In 2023, the FIA WEC and IMSA Sportscar Championship grew to near-unprecedented levels thanks to the onset of a new ‘golden era’ in sportscar racing. As a result, many fans will be discovering the discipline of longer races, with a multi-class aspect.

In sim racing, this is a major part of the community. Yet, fully replicating series from today is quite the challenge. In Assetto Corsa, one can track down the individual cars and liveries of certain championships. But for an easy-to-set-up, complete field of a world-renowned championship, one must look all the way back to the early 2000s.

GTR 2 was a fantastic title, excellent at replicating the 2003 and 2004 FIA GT Series. But that nifty game used another title’s engine as a base, rFactor. In this massively moddable racing game, one can easily set up any race from the 2005 VLN Series. Available to download on RaceDepartment, here is everything you need to know about this incredible rFactor VLN 2005 mod. It is sure to fill your post-Christmas downtime.

What is the VLN?

Among racing fans, the VLN is a name synonymous with three things; the Nürburgring Nordschleife, large grids of race cars and intense competition. Today, the series bears the NLS name – Nürburgring Langstrecken-Serie. But prior to its renaming, VLN – Veranstaltergemeinschaft Langstreckenpokal Nürburgring – was its rather lengthy and typically German appellation.

It is a year-long motorsport championship with the particularity of every race taking place on iterations of the Nürburgring facilities. If you want to test your stuff on the mighty Nords, this is the championship to do so in.

Large grids often form in the championship. This is thanks to the organiser’s main philosophy that any car is welcome with new classes being formed on the regular. Whether you would like to run a fully professional GT3 team, or hit the track in a lightly modified hatchback, there will be space. As a by-product, this often leads to wacky and much-loved creations. The infamous Opel Manta Fox Tail and Dacia Logan from this year’s event are regulars in the series.

With large grids of over 100 cars in every race, one will almost always have another car to battle. Be it within the same class or between categories with wildly different speeds at different points of the circuit, the competition is high. This is something you may notice in recent videos by Super GT, Jimmy Broadbent and Misha Charoudin as they tackled the NLS in the latter half of the 2023 season. Learn more about this endeavour by reading our recent interview with Steve Alvarez Brown.

Full VLN 2005 Grid in rFactor

If such an incredible series interests you, then it may be time to revisit the legendary game that is rFactor. No, not the current title with its new online platform. We are talking about the original release from ISI.

Despite being almost 20 years old, this game still features a committed community. On RaceDepartment, one can find a plethora of third party mods covering all walks of motorsport. But interesting us today is the 2005 VLN mod, a collection of over 100 cars and countless liveries. Pooling together every entry list from the 2005 season, you can fully immerse yourself in the iconic series.

Whilst the mod does not touch on the Nürburgring 24 Hours from that year, the RD rFactor livery depository features many of the liveries from the race. Spend enough time looking through available downloads and perform a bit of file trickery and you could soon see yourself racing the 224-strong grid of the day-long event.

As one would expect from a mod perfectly recreating the series, the creation features each class. The numerous SP categories, ranging from high-level GTs to lowly road cars are all present. Hidden amongst them are whacky prototypes like the Porsche 996 Alzen Biturbo, a crazy model that one could only ever expect to see racing at the Nordschleife.

The majority of models in the pack are obviously German. BMW and Porsche make up the bulk of the car list. However, foreign models such as the famous Chrysler Viper entrants, some exotic Lotus and Maserati cars as well as mundane Renault and Peugeot boxes are all available to race. In fact, one will struggle to choose a car to drive in this amazing collection. The good news is they all seem to drive well, so whatever you choose, you are sure to have fun.

Best Nürburgring Mod for rFactor

Alongside the seemingly infinite choice when it comes to cars, the VLN 2005 mod for rFactor also features its own circuit. Including every layout raced in the 2005 season, it must be one of the best Nürburgring circuit mods in sim racing.

Race cars to road cars all feature in this almighty mod
Race cars to road cars all feature in this almighty mod. Image credit: ISI

Not only does this recreation feature the same layouts as the real series, it also presents the circuit in a number of seasonal contexts. If one is looking to recreate the opening round’s March chill, the mod includes a skin for that. It also features replications of a dry circuit at peak Summer. The possibilities for immersion in this mod are second to none.

Since this mod released back in the late 2000s, racing game technology has jumped a step. In fact, modern recreations of the infamous Green Hell are based on laser scan data. As a result, they are about as faithful as one can get. The version of the circuit available to use in rFactor is somewhat less accurate.

The mod creator based their circuit on onboard footage, photos and maps. Therefore, one must not expect to go from iRacing to rFactor and complete a lap blindfolded. As aforementioned, what sets this track apart is its immersion. Get into the groove, get amongst the pack and, despite the game’s near-20-year-old graphics, you will believe you are racing in the VLN.

What do you make of the VLN 2005 mod for rFactor? Tell us on Twitter at @OverTake_gg or in the comments down below!

A petrol head and motorsports fan since the early days, sim racing has been a passion of mine for a number of years. The perfect way to immerse myself in my true dream job; racing driver. With lots of experience jotting down words about the car industry, I am happy to share my passion for pretend race cars here on Overtake!