This Jaguar XJR-12 finished second at Le Mans behind the Mazda 787B in 1991
Beautiful McLaren M7C rubbed shoulders with the Woking firm's latest road cars
Tazio Nuvolari and Raymond Sommer won Le Mans in this Alfa Romeo 8C 2300 in 1933
The Bentley Speed Six triumphed at Le Mans in 1929 in the hands of Woolf Barnato and Tim Birkin
The mighty Porsche 911 GT1 scored a one-two at Le Mans in 1998
Audi R8 e-tron scooped victory at last year's Le Mans enduro
Geneva show's Le Mans exhibition covered more than 80 years of the 24-hour race
Audi will field three R18 e-tron quattro prototypes at this year's Le Mans 24 Hours
Rule changes mean this year's Audi R18 is a completely new design to its predecessor
Porsche will return to top-flight prototype racing with the striking 919 hybrid
The latest iteration of the Audi RS5 DTM race car has overhauled aerodynamics
Power for the RS5 DTM comes from a 4.0-litre V8 that produces about 455bhp
For 2014, the DTM adopts an F1-style drag reduction system to enhance overtaking
Mitsubishi Colt (foreground) won the East African Safari Rally in 1974 and 1976
Citroën is entering this year's World Touring Car Championship with this C-Elysée
The Volkswagen Polo WRC is currently the dominant force in world rallying
Mini's highly successful Dakar Rally assault is run by the X-Raid preparation firm
Hyundai's WRC assault is all about adding emotional resonance to its brand
Sébastien Loeb's Peugeot 208 T16 triumphed at Pikes Peak in 2013
Lexus RC F GT3 has been designed for sports car competition around the globe
Powered by a modified version of the RC F road car's V8, the GT3 version has 532bhp
The GT3 car is lower and wider than the roadgoing equivalent, and weighs 1250kg
Lexus said this car represents the start of a long-term commitment to GT3 racing
German firm Abt Sportsline unveiled its challenger for the all-electric Formula E series
The Spark-Renault SRT_01E was the first Formula E car to be homologated by the FIA
History-making Chenard and Walcker Sport won the first Le Mans back in 1923
This example of the Jaguar D-type finished second at La Sarthe in 1954
Peugeot's 905 destroyed the opposition in the 1992 Le Mans 24 Hours
Porsche 962 (foreground) and Rondeau-Ford were both winners in the 1980s
The rotary-engined Mazda 787B won Le Mans in 1991 and made quite a noise too
This plug-in hybrid Mitsubishi Outlander competed in last year's Asia Cross Country Rally
Nissan's ZEOD RC will race in the experimental class at Le Mans this summer
Last evolution of race-bred 911 RSR, Porsche's sports car bread and butter
Seat Leon Cup will compete in its own one-make race series starting in May
The new Chevrolet Corvette C7.R is based on Corvette Z06 road car
The adage 'win on Sunday, sell on Monday' is traditionally used to explain how important motor racing is to road car manufacturers.
However, the game has changed considerably over the years. In those formative years – indeed, all the way up until the 1970s – the saloon and sports cars on the world's most famous race tracks and rally stages were often derived directly from road machines.
Improvements in safety and increases in performance mean that today's motorsport vehicles often bear very little resemblance to the models customers can buy from their local dealership.
For example, your local Audi dealer isn't likely to offer you a tempting discount on Ingolstadt's RS5 DTM car anytime soon. So is modern motor racing less valid for the manufacturers? Quite the opposite, but the game has changed dramatically.
These days, motorsport is more of a marketing tool, offering manufacturers the opportunity to build the profile of their brands and raise the level of emotional attachment buyers have with their products. It's why Hyundai is competing in the World Rally Championship, conducting a high-speed global tour with an extreme version of its i20 hatchback.
Competing in modern-day motorsport also has technological advantages. The advent of hybridisation on road and track is enabling manufacturers such as Audi, Porsche and Toyota to conduct condensed research into areas such as battery longevity, electric motor performance and component packaging.
This year's Geneva motor show brought together classic racing cars and cutting-edge designs that reflected precisely why manufacturers continue to be attracted by racing and rallying. Here's our pick of the bunch.