ACC Track Guide: The Nurburgring Nordschleife

Whilst the Nurburgring Nordschleife was met with open arms by fans of Assetto Corsa Competizione, it’s a tough beast to handle. Let’s break it down.

Kunos Simulazioni, the developers of the ultra-popular Assetto Corsa Competizione platform we all love, made the dreams of sim racer worldwide come true in the spring of 2024. On April 1st – ironically April Fools – Kunos released the legendary Nurburgring Nordschleife into the simulator. 

This guide will tell you everything you need to know about the fearsome circuit and how you can get around it without making friends with one of its many barriers. 

What Is The Nurburgring Nordschleife? 

Built in 1927, the Nurburgring Nordschleife has carved out a reputation as one of the most demanding racing circuits in the world. A large part of the reason behind its challenging nature is its sheer length. Measuring a mammoth 28.265 kilometres when it first opened to the public, the combined version of the track – which features the Nordschleife alongside the later-built Grand Prix circuit – comes in at 25.378 km. 

An amazing 170 corners are featured within this distance, forcing drivers to be on top form just to reach the end of the lap, let alone at a competitive pace. The track is also ultra-tight with very little runoff on the exit of the bulk of the corners, with only the FIA Grade 1 Grand Prix section featuring extensive gravel or tarmac run-off. This means that any mistake made on the Nordschleife will likely lead to a race-ending crash, making it even more crucial for drivers to keep concentration.

Due to the extensive length of the venue, this guide will break the track down into several sections so that you know what to expect before you hit the German tarmac. 

Section 1: Hatzenbach To Aremberg

Here at Coach Dave Academy, we already feature a thorough guide of the GP section of the Nurburgring Nordschleife to help you get up to speed as it has been featured in ACC since it was released towards the end of 2018. 

Once leaving the loving arms of the GP layout, you’ll immediately notice the walls closing in. In some ways, the Nordschleife resembles a street circuit due to the close proximity of the walls and how little grass runoff separates the track from the barriers. 

The first sector of the lap is made up predominantly of slow and mid-speed bends. The several slow corners that make up Hatzenbach demand patience from the driver. The curbs on the inside of the corners can be taken, though they’re quite high so it will likely be car dependent on whether using them is viable.

Once the fiddly opening bends are taken care of, the first big danger zone of the circuit comes into view. Flugplatz is a high-speed sweeping right-hander that features a blind entry. A steep crest precedes the corner, so beware of your vehicle going light over the top of it. GT3 cars demand only a small lift on entry with a brand new Coach Dave Academy setup and potentially a shift down into fifth to ensure you achieve optimal rotation. 

A good exit out of here is crucial as you’ll need to carry the momentum down the long stretch to Schwedenkreuz. Arguably an even scarier left-handed sweeper, it is possible to take this bend flat out, though practice will likely be needed to build up confidence first. 

Staying to the left on the exit is key to achieving a flowing line through the mid-speed right of Aremberg, which leads you down the following hill. 

Section 2: Aremberg To Exmuhle

The next part of the high-speed journey through the Eifel mountains begins with somewhat of a rollercoaster ride. 

As soon as you exit Aremberg, you’ll be plunged into a fast downhill stretch leading to Fuchsrohre, a rapid left-hander at the foot of the hill. The car will likely bottom out here as the track steeply rises uphill towards Adenauer Forest. 

A large section of curbing sits on the entry to the left hooker at the crest, where it is crucial to fling the car over while shifting down to fifth, which opens out the track into a pair of slow corners that demand patience. 

You’ll barely escape fourth gear in the next sequence of bends, which all quickly lead into one another. A high-speed left signifies the start of the Metzgesfeld section before several mid-speed bends at Kallenhard follow. Staying off the curbs through the stretch is key, as they will badly destabilize the vehicle. This section has a lot of negative camber, so use that to your advantage to carry more speed through. 

A fourth-gear triple-apex right leads into the ultra-slow Wehrseifen sector. This consists of a tight right taken in second gear, before a right that is taken in third.

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Section 3: Ausfahrt Breidscheid To Karrussell

The start of the Ausfahrt Breidscheid section marks the first real overtaking opportunity since leaving the GP loop. A quick downhill left swiftly transitions into a tricky uphill right turn that leads onto a short straight. Getting a good exit is key to remaining close to your opponent heading into Bergwerk, a slow right hooker that leads onto a slipstreaming hotspot. 

The fast right, called Exmuhle, can be easy to make a mistake at due to the high negative camber on entry and mid-corner, which levels out considerably towards the corner exit. This can have the effect of destabilizing the vehicle under power, so precise throttle control is key until the machine has settled down. 

You’ll want to remain close enough to the car ahead through Bergwerk to try and slipstream past on the long back straight, which leads towards the infamous Karrussell. 

Due to how narrow the stretch is, passing along the high-speed section can be tricky. Good judgement is therefore key, and sometimes you’ll have to back off if a safe chance fails to arise. A quick downshift to fifth will get you through the fast Mutkurve, while a slow right-hander leads you up to the Karrussell. 

Significant time loss will occur if you slide out of the bowl-like corner, so shifting down to second gear before you tip the car in is crucial. Patience is needed as you use the extreme camber of the Karrusell. After a few seconds, the awesome bend, which unlike most of the track features a bumpy concrete surface, spits you back out onto the relatively smooth tarmac. 

Section 4: Hohe Acht To Pflanzgarten II

Having escaped the Karrusell’s clutches, you’ll now enter the second portion of the circuit. Unlike the first half, the second part features many flowing, high-speed turns that reward commitment. Hohe Acht kicks things off in earnest. It is essentially a high-speed S bend that needs to be taken in fourth gear. Just remember to avoid the curb on the inside of the first part but use the one on the second corner to open the entry for the following third-gear right. 

The flying right of Hedwigshohe can be taken flat in fifth before a shift down to fourth is needed to navigate the tricky Wipperman section. Aim to get your left side wheels across the inside curb to open up the second part of the corner, a fast right-hander that features a large concrete curb section you can launch the car across. 

The following set of corners of Eschbach, Brunnchen, and Eiskurve should be taken in third. They are all mid-speed in nature, but linking them together cleanly is important to keeping good momentum to ensure you don’t give away free time. Staying off the curbs is advisable here to prevent unsettling the car. 

The tricky fast right of Pflantzgarten I is next up. The track drops away sharply just before corner entry, which will badly destabilize the car unless you brake just before. Nailing this corner can be difficult and practice will be needed to optimize your line, as carrying good speed on exit is key for the rapid next section. 

The curvy Sprunghugel and Pflantzgarten II can be taken flat in sixth, just do your best to not close your eyes while doing so. Escaping this part means you’re very nearly at the end of the thrilling lap, but a few crucial elements are yet to come.   

Looking for more guidance at the Nordschleife?

Check out our Onboard Laps at the Nurburgring Nordschleife course with some of our professional drivers to ensure you’re fully up to speed. Utilising our new Meta setups, you can be confident that the car is performing at its best.

Section 5: Dottinger Hohe To Finish 

The huge 2.8 km straight of Dottinger Hohe provides by far the best overtaking opportunity of the Nordschleife, but a couple of important bends precede it. Having survived the ultra-fast previous section, shifting down two gears to fourth for the Schwalbenschwanz right-hander is key to carrying good momentum.

A shift into the third is necessary to navigate the second, left-handed part of the bend. The same gear can be used for the mini-Karrusell, which is exactly what it says on the tin; approach it with the same mindset as the earlier Karrusell.

The following high-speed left bend of Galgenkopf is arguably the most important corner on the circuit. A good exit is crucial to get a good run onto the Dottinger Hohe, either to attack or defend. Due to the length of the Dottinger, it’s possible to swap places multiple times as you engage in a slipstream war with your rivals. 

The fearsome Tiergarten is the final obstacle that stands between you and the safety of the start-finish line. The track isn’t wide enough to go two wide as you navigate the esses part, so you’ll need to yourself out if side by side with a rival on entry. 

The first two elements of the section can be taken flat before a heavy braking zone. Changing down to second and remaining off the curbs is optimal here, with a clean run important to carry you to the start/finish line. 

And with that, you have completed a lap of the revered Nurburgring Nordschleife. 

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ACC Track Guide: The Nurburgring Nordschleife
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