No active suspension for Piquet at Lotus
Posted 04 July 2001 - 09:55
Posted 04 July 2001 - 15:04
Piquet was apparently a big fan of active and was disapointed when they didn't use it. The reason they didn't use it in 88 as I understand it, was so they could spend time fixing the bugs in the system without the pressure of racing it. Something that Williams had to do as well later in 88. I think that the reason Lotus won two races in 87 was far more to do with Senna than was appreciated at the time. I have heard it suggested that the reason that Lotus ran the active system during 87 wasn't because it was particularly good but because it was terrible without it.
As to the 100T that was raced during 88, I think it was a genuine dud. At some tracks they were about 3 seconds a lap slower than McLaren using the same engines and tyres! Nigel Roebuck said of it that late season tests revealed "that the monococque had all the torsional rigidity of a jelly on springs". It was also pretty hard to set up properly. It is interesting to look at head on photos of the 99T from 1987 and compare it with an FW11 and look at the 100T and compare it with an MP4/4. To my uninformed eye the Lotus cars look bulkier and would have had more drag. You could pretty much say that the 100T cost Ducarouge his job and Lotus the use of Honda engines.
Posted 05 July 2001 - 13:20
So they could not take advantage of the excellent engine and its good fuel consumption, which was crucial at that time.
Posted 05 October 2001 - 17:43
But in those days, active suspension was a very heavy device and a great power consumer. Unlike the one fitted to the 107B in 1993.
Posted 05 October 2001 - 18:03
The active system deluged Lotus with information, they didn't know how to come to grips with all the data they were collecting...
Posted 06 October 2001 - 13:45
The most striking thing about the McLaren MP4/4, and the thing that it had over all of the other turbo cars in '88, was the lowness of the entire package. It was very much the descendant of Murray's "low-line" Brabham, without the problems caused by having to lay the engine on its side. The Honda V6, coupled with the drastic reduction in fuel tank size, allowed him to get pretty much everything except the roll hoop out of the airflow to the rear wing, so the aerodynamic efficiency of the car was much greater than any of the other turbos. Ferrari, Arrows, and Osella had the excuse of having carried on with modifications to the '87 cars, but Lotus had no excuse.
Of course, that advantage would only last 1 season, and the aerodynamic writing was already on the wall by mid-season, in the form of Newey's March 881. McLaren would be forced to live on Honda horsepower for 4 seasons, and wouldn't have another truly top-flight chassis until Newey's arrival in '97.
For Lotus, though, '88 marked the beginning of the end, as the lack of competitiveness cost them Honda and led to the tumble down through Judd, Lamborghini (what an odd marriage that was), and Ford engines. They enjoyed a brief, heartbreaking renaissance with the Mugen-Honda in the early '90s before finally succumbing to the disease that had its root in Senna's departure, followed by Honda's.
Posted 08 October 2001 - 17:51
"Ducarrouge, cheater frenchman, made us a bomb-car."
Quatro Rodas magazine
Posted 10 October 2001 - 01:52
Basically qualifying for Monza '94, then Irvine shunted Herbert out of the race and Herbert took the restart in the old 107, which had the old, heavy, upright Mugen motor.
Originally posted by Rick Baumhauer
They enjoyed a brief, heartbreaking renaissance with the Mugen-Honda in the early '90s before finally succumbing to the disease that had its root in Senna's departure, followed by Honda's.
Posted 11 October 2001 - 03:45
Yep, that's exactly what I was remembering. I didn't have any of my F1 books at hand, but I clearly remembered Herbert qualifying extremely well at Monza, only to get shunted out and have to run the race in the dismal backup. Just another of those race meetings that promised much, only to disintegrate on raceday.