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What if the DFV had been 5 years late?


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#1 Vicuna

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Posted 07 August 2002 - 10:02

Say Lotus were given exclusive use of the 'new' DFV in 1972, and then Tyrrell and McLaren in 1973.

And then availability for all by 1974.

Where would F1 have gone in the late '60's?

Would BRM have made a mint out of the V12? Or would the Matra have become a commercial proposition? Or the Weslake??

And what of Repco?

Who, and in what, would have ben world champ in 1968?

And '69,70 & 71?

And if this has been done before - hey, I'm still new!

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#2 Allen Brown

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Posted 07 August 2002 - 12:06

It's an interesting question. The Repco would have lasted longer, BRM, Matra and Ferrari would have been even more successful but I wonder if the English teams would have been forced to find something else. Maybe Climax could have been pressured into making a comeback or maybe that Martin V8 might have found some serious backing.

One ugly thought - it might have prolonged the career of the BRM H16.

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#3 BRG

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Posted 07 August 2002 - 12:16

This might have changed the face of F1. Without the DFV, would there have been a March, or a Tyrrell team? Would the whole kit-car movement have never happened and the manufacturers have remained dominant?

Certainly, Ferrari would have profited from this and maybe Ickx would now be remembered as a great WDC. BRM's V12 of the time was competitive enough to win races even against the DFV cars, so perhaps a much stronger BRM team might have survived for longer. Matra were always nearly there with the V12, so some French wins and maybe championships are possible.

Other possibles are that Alfa might have been tempted to develop their V8 for F1. And might Honda have been tempted back? And what about Maserati, or were they already too far gone to do much?

#4 Bernd

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Posted 07 August 2002 - 13:53

Sans DFV I reckon Chris Amons Grand Prix career would look a lot different.

Maserati!!! No way it was nothing but a tweaked sports car engine and hopelessly outclassed. Though the Ferrari V12 also was I guess but no so outclassed. I can't see the H16 ever going anywhere and the V12 was always a disappointment. Maybe Brabham would've stuck with Repco thorughout the quad cam maladies period. Hondas V12 was far to heavy and the air cooled V8 was a mistake. With AAR the Weslakes were just to temperamental to ever achieve a championshop.

Yeah for sure Ferrari would've benefited more than anyone else in my opinion.

#5 YOSSARION

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Posted 07 August 2002 - 15:03

I'd concur with the general opinion that Ferrari (especially with the introduction of the F12) would have been dominant. The kit car thing would probably have fizzled out. BRM and Matra would have looked much much better in the history books during this time and Alfa probably would have come back in their own right alot earlier (unless the unions had a say in it - I remember they were opposed to F1). Weren't Maserati working on another V12 - does anybody have any knowledge of this?
Where would the top drivers of the day have ended up. Where would Stewart, Rindt etc have gone without the Matras, Lotus, McLaren etc.


#6 Doug Nye

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Posted 07 August 2002 - 16:00

Originally posted by Allen Brown
It's an interesting question. The Repco would have lasted longer, BRM, Matra and Ferrari would have been even more successful but I wonder if the English teams would have been forced to find something else. Maybe Climax could have been pressured into making a comeback or maybe that Martin V8 might have found some serious backing.

One ugly thought - it might have prolonged the career of the BRM H16.

Allen


It would certainly have boosted sales of the BRM V12 - after McLaren's performance with the engine in both the Canadian and Italian GPs, with so few alternatives and the V12 plainly superior in remaining potential to the Repco V8 by the end of 1967 - Bourne could perhaps have made some money. McLaren-BRM versus Lotus-BRM versus Matra-BRM versus (by 1969) Brabham-BRM...hmmm. Interesting might-have-been. But it did not happen. The Dagenham Dustbin triumphed!

But if Ford hadn't come up with the deal for Cosworth, perhaps Macdonald of BSR - the British Sound recording gramophone company - might have come across with the money. The DFV could still have happend without Ford - but the question is what if there had been NO DFV...

DCN

#7 fines

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Posted 07 August 2002 - 17:29

I somehow agree with Doug: I can't see how Cosworth could've passed up on the temptation of doing the DFV on their own, but as a low-cost "privateer" project. Somewhere along the way a backer would surely have arisen...

#8 ray b

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Posted 07 August 2002 - 18:21

why did BRM build a V-12 and not use the weslake v-12
why did bruce use the BRM over the more powerfull weslake
if time and $$$$ BRM spent was used on westlakes V-12
its early problems could of been cured, remember they only built a few weslakes!!
did Dan block others from its use?????
why didn't anyone try a super or turbo on the existant 1.5 65 motors??

#9 David McKinney

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Posted 07 August 2002 - 20:02

Originally posted by ray b
why did BRM build a V-12 and not use the weslake v-12

Both companies were in the business of making their own engines. The BRM V12 was not designed as a GP engine, but as a sportscar unit for customers to bring in some extra income.
why did bruce use the BRM over the more powerfull weslake
Presumably because he was offered a BRM and wasn't offered a Weslake
if time and $$$$ BRM spent was used on westlakes V-12
its early problems could of been cured, remember they only built a few weslakes!!
did Dan block others from its use?????

True, but the question would presumably never have occurred to them. Likewise Dan would not have "blocked" others from using his V12 as such. It was designed and built for his use, with no suggestion of marketing it commercially to other users.
why didn't anyone try a super or turbo on the existant 1.5 65 motors??
They weren't designed for forced induction. There was no provision in their layout for bolting in a blower. They would have used too much fuel. They would have blown themselves to pieces. Things like that

#10 Doug Nye

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Posted 07 August 2002 - 22:49

The BRM 2-valve per cylinder V12 was intended as a sports car unit for customer sale - the Gurney-Weslake 4-valve per cylinder V12 was intended as a full-house works Formula 1 engine. Weslake was terribly hard pressed even to provide for Gurney's works team needs - they could not possibly have undertaken supply to anyone else, even if Dan had agreed to such a thing.

DCN

#11 ray b

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Posted 08 August 2002 - 01:30

Originally posted by Doug Nye
The BRM 2-valve per cylinder V12 was intended as a sports car unit for customer sale - the Gurney-Weslake 4-valve per cylinder V12 was intended as a full-house works Formula 1 engine. Weslake was terribly hard pressed even to provide for Gurney's works team needs - they could not possibly have undertaken supply to anyone else, even if Dan had agreed to such a thing.

DCN



bruce and Dan were sorta team mates in late 67 sometimes anyway
and after Dan was out of the F-1 game NOBODY picked up weslakes V-12 in 68 or later
so I just wonder WHY??

BRM and sportscars is an other big WHY??
had they ever before built a sportscar or motor for one??
other than the turbine for le monz???

#12 Mac Lark

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Posted 08 August 2002 - 05:28

The first thing for me is Lotus in 1967.

Jimmy C won 4 races that year and the 1st of '68 to pass Fangio. I don't think he would have in an H16 powered 49.

Would Repco have set themselves up as a multi team supplier? And if so, would a Repco powered 49 with Clark beaten the similarly powered BT24's?

Under such a scenario, would the 49 have been built?

My guess is Lotus would've used the V12 BRM that Bruce got at the end of 1967, and that these in the back of a 49 would have won some races. But 4?? Hmm.

BRM of course would have been happy for customers to have the V12 in the belief they were keeping the demon H16 for them selves.

No doubt that Ickx would have been a WDC and Amon would have won GP's - at least!

And - would JYS have ever won 27 GP'S.

Perhaps only in a Ferrari. Which is where Clark may have gone in 1967!

#13 Barry Boor

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Posted 08 August 2002 - 06:39

Would the whole kit-car movement have never happened and the manufacturers have remained dominant?



:( :( :( :( :(

#14 mat1

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Posted 08 August 2002 - 10:22

I don't think there would have been a Matra-Brm (as Doug supposes). The Matra-Ford wouldn't have happened of course, and Matra wouldhave concentrated on the V12. I think Stewart would have driven the Matra. Perhaps he wouldn't have been WDC in 1969, but on the other hand Matra (with Stewart and Tyrrell) would have won champinonships afterwards.

The BRM V12-southgate would have been very strong in 1970 - 1972, and of course the Ferrari.

But who would have been WDC in 1968? Hill in a Lotus-BRM? Hulme again, this time in a Mclaren BRM?

Hmmm, makes me think....

mat1

#15 Catalina Park

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Posted 08 August 2002 - 11:23

Repco may have fixed the 4 valve engine for 69 but I don't think that they had the capacity to buind enough to supply another team (They had enough problems keeping up with Jack)

#16 Roger Clark

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Posted 08 August 2002 - 11:24

Originally posted by ray b



bruce and Dan were sorta team mates in late 67 sometimes anyway
and after Dan was out of the F-1 game NOBODY picked up weslakes V-12 in 68 or later
so I just wonder WHY??


Because a large part of the reason for Gurney's withdrawal was problems with the Weslake engine.

#17 fines

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Posted 08 August 2002 - 16:47

Originally posted by mat1
I don't think there would have been a Matra-Brm (as Doug supposes).

Tyrrell ran Matra/BRMs in F2, and he wasn't keen on running the French V12. It's only natural he would've turned to the BRM unit.

#18 Wellington

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Posted 08 August 2002 - 17:05

But then I think the 49 would not have been the sleek car it was. A great deal was achieved though the coupling of the engine with the chassis and an heavier power unit would have lead to some other choices in design and dynamics. I wonder what Chapman's genius would have found to keep the Team technicaly ahead of the rest of the field!
Or would he still have made the reference point for other designers? Would Honda have emerged as a technical power sooner?
Other point: postponing the implication of a mass-market car maker like Ford may have contributed to keep F1 as a meeting between craftsmen and gentlemen drivers. If there was no need to put so much money in, maybe the whole marketing and professional side of racing would have never grown. Maybe sports car competitions would have been soundly and safely organised in parallel to F1 racing with many more drivers competing in both. Maybe...

Regards :)

#19 BRG

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Posted 08 August 2002 - 17:09

I don't agree, fines. Ken Tyrrell used the DFV at Matra, and when they wanted to substitute their own V12, he went his own way with a March-DFV and later his own cars.

But without the DFV in the equation, the Matra/Elf deal, complete with V12, might have looked a much more attractive proposition. We might have seen a Tyrrell-run Elf-Matra team that survived for many years and maybe won multiple WDCs with Stewart at the wheel.

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#20 ray b

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Posted 08 August 2002 - 20:47

Originally posted by Roger Clark


Because a large part of the reason for Gurney's withdrawal was problems with the Weslake engine.


I know Dan had big problems with FI and pumps failing
but did the motor ever fail [blowup?] or just the sub-systems
that could of [should of] been swap out or improved
but when all was working right the weslake was a winner
but never seen again after dan


side note why no eagle- ford Dan was a fordman and raced for them many times
with very good results for them???

#21 mp4

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Posted 08 August 2002 - 21:09

Originally posted by Bernd:
"Sans DFV I reckon Chris Amons Grand Prix career would look a lot different."
:up:

I think the same could have been said for Jacky Ickx, as well. :up:

This IS a wonderful question to ponder, though. Vicuna may be new but obviously has a keen mind for making the rest of us think about things. Well done and welcome to the club...

As an aside, I recall, about 12 years ago someone was trying to ressurect the Weslake motor for a Group C/ IMSA GTP bid. Does anyone remember this and can they shed some light on my foggy memory?

Cheers :wave:

#22 Vitesse2

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Posted 08 August 2002 - 22:19

One point not yet addressed is whether the 3-litre formula would actually have continued, at least in the form that then existed. Without the DFV, would there have been the forcing house which drove the development of (especially) the BRM V12 and Matra V12? Even in 1969-70, with the DFV around, the early F5000s were approaching the speeds of F1 cars - without the DFV they might have exceeded them.

So, without the DFV, might the F1 capacity limit have risen? To 4.2 litres maybe? A true world formula for the first time since the 40s? :)

#23 Mac Lark

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Posted 09 August 2002 - 00:39

What a good point Vitesse.

Could F5000 become F1? Ooops, sorry. I must be thrashed with a birch branch for even thinking it.

Here's a possible 1968 field:

McLaren M7A BRM V12: Bruce and Denny
Brabham BT26 Repco: Jack and Jochen
Lotus 49 Honda V12: Jimmy and Norman
BRM V12: Pedro & Mike
Cooper BRM V12: Jackie Ickx & ?
Ferrari V12: Chris and JYS
Eagle Weslake V12: Dan
Honda V12: Big John
Matra V12: Beltoise & ?
Walker- Cooper BRM V12: Seppi

Plus the other privateers.

This scenario assumes Stewart goes to Ferrari with Ickx having his first full year with Cooper with whom he drove at the end of 1967.

Oh, and Lotus run Honda's. Wasn't that once rumoured?

#24 Catalina Park

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Posted 09 August 2002 - 12:03

Without the DFV would:
The Ferrari Flat 12 have happened?
Would Cooper, Honda and Eagle have quit?
Would Denny have gone to Mclaren?
Would DSJ have lost his beard?

#25 Don Capps

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Posted 09 August 2002 - 13:09

A major problem with the Gurney-Weslake engine, as I understand it, was that there was not a standardized production process which allowed the interchange of components and facilitated maintenance. I believe that in 1968 AAR did make an attempt to do exactly that but by then the clock was running out. The engine used at Monaco was an AAR-built engine, not a Weslake assembled product, if I am remembering correctly.

Off the top of my head, I cannot recall if AAR had begun work on the Mark 2 version of the engine, but I vaguely remember that there was to be a follow-on to the original engine with one big goal being the standardization of components and another being a more "production-friendly" design. I also think that Weslake was not to be the agent for this, but that AAR was planning to use either an in-house shop or someone else for this task -- however, this is merely from the dregs of a fading memory.....

Without the DFV there is little doubt that GP (F1) would have taken a few different twists and turns in the road than the ones it did. The engine situation for 1969 was a challenge even with the DFV, so imagine the 1969 season without the DFV. The grids for 1968 would have been even more of a question mark.

It is perhaps not unrealistic to imagine a new formula beginning with the 1970 or 1971 season. However, I doubt that it would have been F/5000-ish, more likely than not it would have dropped back to F2, assuming that the FVA and Dino engines were performing well and that BMW was taking more of an interest in F2 as perhaps Honda and Renault.....

#26 David McKinney

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Posted 09 August 2002 - 14:34

Originally posted by Don Capps
more likely than not it would have dropped back to F2, assuming that the FVA and Dino engines were performing well and that BMW was taking more of an interest in F2 as perhaps Honda and Renault.....

...but we can't assume the FVA would even have existed. It was after all part of the DFV project :D

#27 Don Capps

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Posted 09 August 2002 - 15:44

Originally posted by David McKinney
...but we can't assume the FVA would even have existed. It was after all part of the DFV project :D


Hence my hedging with the use of the word "assuming" since the FVA was a component of the overall Ford/Cosworth program. I think that Cosworth would have continued to participate in the racing engine market, but perhaps with a rather different approach and perhaps different outcomes.

Perhaps Holbay and some of the others would have remained factors as well. Or, even a few of those oddities such as the FPE or the Martin or what-have-you might have been given more opportunities to make the grid.

#28 Vicuna

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Posted 09 August 2002 - 19:53

If!

If the 3 litre formula had stayed and the DFV was 5 years late, is it likely that a turbo 1.5 litre may have seen the light of day 5 or so years before Renault?

And did the turbo technology exist in the early '70's to get sufficient horsepower out of such an engine?

I'm not talking a V8 Climax or BRM or Ferrari with a hair dryer bolted on, I'm talking a purpose built jobbie. You see, without the DFV, 400 bhp may have been enough in 1970...

#29 fines

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Posted 09 August 2002 - 20:05

Turbocharger technology was good enough in the USofA to get more than 800 bhp out of a 2.6 Offy! How much do you want? :D

#30 Vicuna

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Posted 11 August 2002 - 01:08

Yes the OFFY'S WERE CERTAINLY AROUND THE 650 mark in the early 70's.

However I was rather thinking of an engine to run on petrol and that wouldn't spend 3 hours and near full throttle.

#31 Ray Bell

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Posted 13 August 2002 - 14:09

Originally posted by Vitesse2
One point not yet addressed is whether the 3-litre formula would actually have continued, at least in the form that then existed. Without the DFV, would there have been the forcing house which drove the development of (especially) the BRM V12 and Matra V12? Even in 1969-70, with the DFV around, the early F5000s were approaching the speeds of F1 cars - without the DFV they might have exceeded them.


Maybe so... intriguing thought.

Personally, I believe the Repco problems would have been solved and that the Australian engine might have been a big player in the field. I doubt that the Repco organisation would have been too daunted about supplying a few teams, after all, they were supplying Australian customers in both sports cars and in Gold Star competition, and they had a few engines running in hillclimb cars in England etc.

But this raises the question of whether the twin cam 4-valve Repcos would have come into being... after all, were they not the Repco answer to the DFV, which was actually visible to all once the FVA came on stream.

It was inevitable, however, that Repco go to twin cams...

Shame about the oil suppliers being different in Australia and in F1.

#32 Frank de Jong

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Posted 13 August 2002 - 14:24

Originally posted by Vicuna
Yes the OFFY'S WERE CERTAINLY AROUND THE 650 mark in the early 70's.

However I was rather thinking of an engine to run on petrol and that wouldn't spend 3 hours and near full throttle.


I think you're right; the Indy engines could not be compared with F1. Known examples of turbo engines were the BMW 2002 8-valve saloon engine from 1969; only 290 HP, 2 litres, and unreliable as well. Porsche's 917/10 engine became drivable only in 1972 with introduction of the wastegate; Alpine had a 24-valve V6 2-litre in 1975 which gave a little under 500 HP. Schnitzer built a BMW 1.4 turbo in 1977 with 360-380 HP.

So it might have taken a while to get a turbo competitive.

#33 Pyry L

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Posted 13 August 2002 - 15:29

Re: Alpine. IIRC the 2.1l single turbo flat six of the very rare Porsche Carrera RSR Turbo was rated at 500hp/7600rpm and 56mkg (408 lb/ft) torque at the end of the 1974 season. Weren´t those the same engines that then found their way into the engine bays of various 908s?

#34 Frank de Jong

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Posted 13 August 2002 - 18:19

The Porsche as rated a little over 500 HP in 1975. Mind you, it was 2142 cc, so far too big for F1. In 1977 Porsche created a 1425 cc engine for the 935 "Baby". It was rated at 370 HP.

#35 Pyry L

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Posted 13 August 2002 - 18:53

Originally posted by Frank de Jong
The Porsche as rated a little over 500 HP in 1975. Mind you, it was 2142 cc, so far too big for F1. In 1977 Porsche created a 1425 cc engine for the 935 "Baby". It was rated at 370 HP.


I realize that the Porsche and Alpine engines were too big for F1, but since this is one of those wonderful what if threads one can view the two in light of the question that would have the then existing engine formula 3/1.5 been continued past the beginning of the 70s or would the direction taken towards F2, F5000 or sportscars with their wonderful x1.4 coefficient for forced induction engines. In light of the power extracted by Schnitzer and Porsche from the small turbo engines, had the 3 l formula been continued I think it would´ve been doubtful that we would have seen a serious effort on a 1.5 l turbocharged formula one engine before Renault introduced in the real world.

#36 Vitesse2

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Posted 13 August 2002 - 23:07

Originally posted by Pyry L


I realize that the Porsche and Alpine engines were too big for F1, but since this is one of those wonderful what if threads one can view the two in light of the question that would have the then existing engine formula 3/1.5 been continued past the beginning of the 70s or would the direction taken towards F2, F5000 or sportscars with their wonderful x1.4 coefficient for forced induction engines. In light of the power extracted by Schnitzer and Porsche from the small turbo engines, had the 3 l formula been continued I think it would´ve been doubtful that we would have seen a serious effort on a 1.5 l turbocharged formula one engine before Renault introduced in the real world.


The 1966 formula was heralded as the "return to power" and to me it is inconceivable that in the event of failure or stagnation of that formula the FIA would have taken the retrograde step of reducing the capacity limit. The F2 Championships of 1952-3 were a pragmatic answer to a very real problem: there were no truly competitive F1 cars ready to race apart from the Ferraris, Alfa had retired and BRM weren't ready (as usual). Had the DFV not existed the 1966 formula would have come up for discussion in 1968-69, by which time F5000 was in operation. In addition, the big banger Can-Ams were in full cry, while the Ferrari 512 and Porsche 917 were just coming on stream after the brief reign of the GT40. F1 would have looked in danger of no longer being the premier series (indeed, IIRC, there was talk of this anyway around 1970 when sports cars and F5000s were setting times very close to F1 cars - see Spa and Monza especially!) Had the DFV not existed, I believe serious consideration would have been given to increasing the capacity limit - to at least 3.5 litres, perhaps even 4.2 litres as I posted above. At that point, they might also have taken the opportunity to ban or severely restrict superchargers and turbos. And I'm talking about pure racing engines here, not stock-blocks, so F5000 is ruled out of the equation - F1 has never been about stock blocks ..... what price a linered-down or short stroke Porsche 917 engine in a GP car?

#37 Don Capps

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Posted 14 August 2002 - 00:52

V2 makes a good, logical case for an increase in the displacement in the 1970/1971 period to perhaps somewhere in the 3.5 to 4.5-litres area, very possibly 4.2-litres to entice the Americans back into the fold with either super/turbo-charging either eliminated or staying at 1.5-litres. However, if the CSI allowed a return to methanol fuel, then the turbos would have been a viable alternative. Perhaps there is sort of inevitablity that the turbos would have arrived in some way, shape, or form!

#38 mat1

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Posted 14 August 2002 - 07:53

In reality, a result of the availability of the DFV was a competition on other aspects of the car than the engine. Especially the early seventies saw a wonderful flowering of ideas in chassis-design and aerodynamics. There was never a time when GP-cars were more different in appearance (or am I exaggerating?)

If the DFV had not existed, and there was not another rather cheap, rather powerful and rather reliable engine available (Repco? Climax? BRM? ...?), the money would have gone in engine development instead of chassis development. And that would have changed the face of f1, of course.

I think the major steps in chassis innovation are (almost) always taken by builders which use a stock engine (in f1: Cooper, Lotus several times, Williams, Tyrrell, for instance).

mat1

#39 Henri Greuter

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Posted 14 August 2002 - 15:19

The people talking about a possible earlier arrival of 1.5 turbos to make up for the DFV, I don't thoink that this might have happened.

Yes, the offy was making some 650 hp at the time but remember, Mclaren had used a 3 liter quadcam Ford, derived from the 4.2 l Quadcam Indy Ford already in '66, Not that it was such a success but neither was the 2.8 turbo built from 1968 on from the same engine. the improved 2.65 of 69-70 were better.
For the record: the turbo Offy was capable of 1200 and more in 1973, on a dyno they once ran one that by accidient delivered 1400+!!

We are always in awe about the 1100 hp of donohue's 917-30 Can-Am machine but remember that was a 5.4 liter. the Offy did the same, granted, on methanol, but with half the capacity and 1/3th of the cylinders.
Talk about a halmark engine in racing history, the Offy makes it into the top 10.


And as stated, the Indy engines ran on methanol, not on petrol.

Maybe Ford would have pored more in the 3 l of the quadcam, Remember, originally it powered the GT40's in '64 as well before the used the 4.7 and 7 liter Detroit junk.


I personally believe that the 1.5 liter turbos were considered as no option as long as fuel regulations forbid methanol. Only after Porsche and Renault gained some success with their 2.1 liters and more technology on making turbo engines work on petrol the box of Pandorra was finally opened wide enough to make the turbo a serious option at last. Don't forget that it must have been way easier to achieve 3 l atmo performances with a 2.1 as sportscars permitted than with a 1.5 that F1 demanded.

Would the Maserati V12 have been used longer, or more efforts thrown in the Repco's?
Climax giving the Godiva V8 a chance after all?


I almost believe that technically, F1 could have been much more fun without the DFV than it eventually became with!

Don't wake me up guys, these are sweet dreams.


Henri Greuter

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#40 Ray Bell

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Posted 14 August 2002 - 23:53

I would agree, and I wouldn't think that the aerodynamic tangents would have been missed, either.

Brabham, after all, was experimenting with wings before he had a DFV... Ferrari followed suit, and Lotus adopted them in the midst of revamping the 49 and while dreaming up the 72.

Now that you mention the Indy Ford engine being fitted to the Ford GT40, I wonder if I actually remember this being done? I do have a hazy thought about it, but was it a fact?

There could only have been one car so equipped, surely? Or are we talking about Ford's pushrod Indy engine, an alloy version of the 260?

#41 Vitesse2

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Posted 15 August 2002 - 00:07

Originally posted by Ray Bell
I would agree, and I wouldn't think that the aerodynamic tangents would have been missed, either.

Brabham, after all, was experimenting with wings before he had a DFV... Ferrari followed suit, and Lotus adopted them in the midst of revamping the 49 and while dreaming up the 72.


Ray: are you confusing Brabham and McLaren? McLaren were experimenting with wings in 1966, well before Brabham et al.

#42 Vicuna

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Posted 20 August 2002 - 09:06

I am really impressed, but not surprised, by the breadth of thought on this question.

Seems we can conclude:

1. BRM would've made some serious dosh
2. Repco could have got serious and supplied a few more teams
3. The turbo domination would not have necessarily started in the early '70's.
4. The careers of some drivers could look very different
5. Matra would never win a title


What about this - would Ferrari have been 'encouraged' to supply engines to other teams to 'save' F1? Even if it were last years engine..

#43 pc13

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Posted 20 August 2002 - 20:04

Originally posted by Vicuna

5. Matra would never win a title


I think I may disagree with the Matra bit there, but they'd need the BRM or Repco engines to do it. And it would have to be done before they were bought by Simca.


What about this - would Ferrari have been 'encouraged' to supply engines to other teams to 'save' F1? Even if it were last years engine..


Encouraged by whom? There was no FOCA and no Bernie Ecclestone to 'encourage' Enzo. No sponsors willing to spend millions of dollars and keep happy either. And I'd like to see anyone in F1 trying to 'encourage' Enzo to supply another team.

Paulo

#44 petefenelon

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Posted 22 August 2002 - 14:27

Originally posted by Vicuna
Say Lotus were given exclusive use of the 'new' DFV in 1972, and then Tyrrell and McLaren in 1973.

And then availability for all by 1974.

Where would F1 have gone in the late '60's?

Would BRM have made a mint out of the V12? Or would the Matra have become a commercial proposition? Or the Weslake??

And what of Repco?

Who, and in what, would have ben world champ in 1968?

And '69,70 & 71?

And if this has been done before - hey, I'm still new!


Me too

Looking at the size of F1 in the late sixties, it was only really the DFV that kept it going.

Hypothesising a DFV-free F1.... well....

Ferrari - probably could've supplied a three car works team, maybe supplied older engines (250GT units like the J A Pearce Coopers? Dino Tasmans perhaps once they'd got the V12 producing enough grunt?) to the odd privateer?

Honda - maybe, just maybe, we might've seen a Honda Europe programme with the V12 and an ongoing Honda Japan programme with the aircooled V8? Could Sir Jack's Honda connections have secured him either of the engines? -- the V8 in a light Tauranac chassis sounds quite promising.

BRM - Would they have perservered with the H16? Assume they did and kept on with the 4-valve version of that, and the V12 went out to the likes of Cooper, McLaren etc. Looks like they would've been the numerically dominant marque for the "English" constructors, anyway?

Weslake - engines were "knife and fork jobs" with no interchangeability, so the chance of supplying much more than Dan Gurney seems weak.

Matra - well, their V12 owed quite a bit to the BRM, so who knows, maybe Matra-BRM rather than Matra-Matra and Matra-Ford?

Alfa - only just stretching their V8 from 2l to 3l, weren't they? Didn't exactly set the world on fire when it ran in various McLarens and Marches apart from the odd cat-with-a-scalded-behind qualifying lap at Monza.... and who knows what was in those engines?!

Maserati - the V12 was the best part of a decade old already and seemed to be running out of steam.

Climax - debatable how long the FPF could've kept going competitively, even with privateers! Chapman wheedling one of the flat-16s out of them and putting a supercharger on top has a delightfully mad sound to it doesn't it? :)

Repco - seemed to paint themselves into a corner with the 8-series engines, and were at the wrong end of the world to keep up. How long would Sir Jack have perservered after '68?

Porsche - the 908 engine was probably too big to be put into a sensible single seater, so let's assume that wouldn't've got onto the grid?

BMW - fantasy island here - what would Apfelbeck heads on a shorter-stroke version of their 3168cc V8 look like (apart from bloody scary?)

Alpine - well, Redele apparently built an F1 car around his vaguely-Renault V8 in the late 60s but I've no idea if it ever turned a wheel; Renault certainly weren't keen on it!

The others.... well the Serenissima (nee ATS) only had about 260bhp so let's rule that out... the Indy Ford that McLaren also had a go with wasn't quite right for F1 either...

Any other abandoned/obscure late sixties projects? (DCN - I vaguely recall a paragraph in one of your books about proposed exotica like a Ferrari W18 and some strange Japanese ideas?)

Perhaps the failure of the DFV would've meant another F1 interregnum like 52-3, with F2 becoming the top category (maybe it would've moved from 1.6 to 2l earlier) - FVA and then BDA vs BMW vs Dino? (this is predicated on the Cosworth "fours" happening but not the eight, of course ;))

Perhaps, given that sports cars were still quicker than F1s in the early 3.0l years, they might've become the top class of racing?

Who knows? Interesting what-if opportunities!

#45 Vitesse2

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Posted 22 August 2002 - 14:41

Originally posted by petefenelon


Alpine - well, Redele apparently built an F1 car around his vaguely-Renault V8 in the late 60s but I've no idea if it ever turned a wheel; Renault certainly weren't keen on it!

Not sure if Renault knew about it actually - and Redelé was the one who wasn't keen:

http://www.atlasf1.c...=Alpine Bianchi

#46 petefenelon

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Posted 23 August 2002 - 11:15

Originally posted by Vitesse2


Ray: are you confusing Brabham and McLaren? McLaren were experimenting with wings in 1966, well before Brabham et al.


Both Brabham and McLaren were experimenting with wings early (at least in F1 terms - the usual caveats about the Chapparal and Michel May's Porsche go here :))

Herd put a crude wing onto the back of the M2A "tyre test car" as early as '66, mainly to put more load onto the tyres. He's quoted as having said something like "if the engine had worked it would've been our demon tweak for 1967" but the Indy Ford was no good and it obviously got put to one side... although McLaren were quite early to pick up on wings again -- there's some lovely shots of the McLaren works mini van with a tall strutted wing on it; they used that to measure the downforce at various (presumably fairly low!) speeds. Must've looked incredible pootling around on the road!

Brabham were one of the first teams to actually use wings in F1 races - they started off with various little bib spoilers and things. Spa '68 was the first time the tall wings appeared, on Ferrari and Brabhams, though Lotus had run nose wings at Monaco.

Dale Porteous had put a bit of helicopter rotor upside down on Jimmy's 49 in practice for a Tasman race
the winter before, but Jimmy didn't fancy actually racing it without Chapman's OK.

#47 Vicuna

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Posted 14 March 2003 - 05:58

Currently in the middle of Tony Rudd's book 'It was Fun'.

I'm looking forward to geting to the point where it sounds as if it might have been.

I was fascinated to read that BRM were commissioned to build a V12 for Matra although it seems no one told Sir Alfred it was under a cloak of secrecy.

When he announced it, Matra withdrew and built their own V12.

What occurs to me in reading the book is the massive leap between the DFV and anything else in 1968/69.

As far as V8's are concerned, it s not as though the 1967 was just a teeny bit better than a Repco for example.

#48 SimonW

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Posted 14 March 2003 - 12:48

Coming rather late to this thread (having only recently joined the forum) a couple of points occur to me.

First, I very much doubt that any other engine manufacturer at the time would have had the ability to supply in greater number - as has been pointed out most wre struggling to supply one team. The DFV was not only an engine with good performance, but it was, as far as I know, the first F1 engine designed to be manufactured. Don't underestimate the input of the other two members of the triumvirate, Mike Costin and Ben Rood, in this respect. From the start a lot of specially designed machine tools and fixtures were used to ensure repeatability in machining and assembly. I suspect it was some time before other manufacturers went the same way.

Second, straying a little off-topic, if no DFV then no DFX - whither Indycar? No MB 190E 16v? No YB engine (Sierra Cosworth et al)? No Ilmor? And I wonder what would have happenned to some of the people who joined Cosworth for the DFV project, such as Mike Hall who joined from BRM to do the detail design under Duckworth? He went on to design the MB and Opel 16v heads amongst others. And no Cosworth Foundry at Worcester with the influence it has had on improving aluminium block and head casting in many places. Examples include Zeus's foundry in Dudley that has provided to Ilmor and Ferrari, and VAW foundry in Dillingen that make Ford Sigma heads, Nemak's Windsor Aluminum (ex-Ford) and others.

#49 Ray Bell

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Posted 14 March 2003 - 12:56

I think you underestimate Repco...

They were on the crest of a wave at the end of 1967. They had the 4-valve engine well in hand, the only problem over the coming year being that the lubricants used in testing differed from those used on the circuit.

Phil Irving had ideas in mind to overcome the problem, and they could readily have done it. Repco was then a huge organisation... they could have assigned the manpower. The only issue would have been distance, but that would have been solved as there was money coming into F1 and that would have brought things along for them.

I wouldn't make any bets about the Repco being difficult to manufacture either. Remember that the heads on the early engines were interchangeable from one bank to the other for this very reason... and Irving had a background in production design as well.

#50 petefenelon

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Posted 14 March 2003 - 14:15

Originally posted by SimonW
Coming rather late to this thread (having only recently joined the forum) a couple of points occur to me.

First, I very much doubt that any other engine manufacturer at the time would have had the ability to supply in greater number - as has been pointed out most wre struggling to supply one team. The DFV was not only an engine with good performance, but it was, as far as I know, the first F1 engine designed to be manufactured. Don't underestimate the input of the other two members of the triumvirate, Mike Costin and Ben Rood, in this respect. From the start a lot of specially designed machine tools and fixtures were used to ensure repeatability in machining and assembly. I suspect it was some time before other manufacturers went the same way.


Ben Rood really is the unsung genius there - the first guy who managed to rationalise and standardise the production of racing engines and arguably the bloke who helped Cosworth move from a "race shop" to a part of the automotive industry.

I assume Ben's enjoying a well-deserved retirement now - I think he's slightly older than DKD and Mike Costin?