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Does anybody know the exact specification of the Lotus 40 please?


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#1 mariner

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Posted 01 February 2015 - 14:45

I must have an affinity for underdogs or hopeless cases as I have always been fascinated by the very unsuccessful Lotus 30/40.

 

The 30 was, of course the car Chapman built with backbone frame despite his designers saying it wont work; and the 40 was famously described as a “30 with 10 more mistakes".

 

There is a lot of data on the Lotus 30 which had the series 1 with 13" wheels and the series 2 with a revised backbone and, I think 15" wheels.

However there is very little detailed data on the Lotus 40 of which only three were built.

 

It had a bigger Ford 351 engine; I think a Hewland LG400 transmission instead of the ZF unit in the 30 and certainly 15" wheels. Some areo fixes were added to the 30's swoopy lines but remained a somewhat smaller car than th Lola T70.

 

From a picture of Clark’s car at Riverside in 1965 it seems to have fuel injection with tall ram pipes.

 

https://s-media-cach...33f2ee1a14a.jpg

 

I know that Lotus used the UK Teclemit-Jackson (TJ) system on the Lotus 30 (just to add to its problems) but I am not sure if the Riverside car had TJ or some other injection. The tall ram stacks were not on the 40 that Jim Clark drove in the UK

 

http://www.wmdportal...o-project-cars/

 

I think the 351 engine was the Windsor block, a tall deck version of the original 289 Cobra engine.

 

http://en.wikipedia....sor_engine#351W

 

The block mountings and bell housing would have been the same as the 289 engine used in the Lotus 30 which makes sense.

 

One thing which intrigues me is whether Ford racing helped Lotus with the 351 engine. Lotus had of course lost out to Lola on sports cars with Ford but by 1965 the preferred Lola T70 engine was probably the Chevrolet small block 327/350. I have never heard of Lotus having the sort of engine building capablity in the Uk to assemble and develop a special 450bhp 351 Ford  engine. I would have thought that capabilty lay very much in the USA. The appearence of much taller ram pipes betwen the cars Uk debut and Rverside  would support a US supplied engine I think.

 

Maybe Ford could see the beginnings of its virtual exclusion from big banger/Can Am racing and supplied something special to Lotus for the important Riverside race. That 1965 race was won by Hap Sharp in a Chevy - powered (and supported) Chaparral. Amazingly Jim Clark came second in the awful 40, one of his many great drives.


Edited by mariner, 01 February 2015 - 15:41.


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#2 raceannouncer2003

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Posted 02 February 2015 - 06:38

Kirk Keyes in Portland, Oregon has a website with contact info:

 

http://www.lotus30.com

 

Vince H.



#3 mariner

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Posted 02 February 2015 - 19:18

Vince , thank you for the link.

 

The "pink srtamps" site is the most detailed source on the internet for Lotus 30/40 information but it is stil sketchy on the actual Lotus 40 as raced by Team Lotus.

 

I far as I know no other 30/40 ever ran the 351 engine. Most were upgraded to a 302 sometimes with Gurney weslake heads.

 

The actual Team Lotus 40's were also I think unique in running the Hewland transmission , the LG500 not LG400 as I said above.

 

All in all the Team Lotus 40's we a bit of a mystery car all round.

 

Here is very rare photo of a Lotus 40 beiing started up by Roger Putman,g iven his role at Lotus I think we can take his comments as accurate.

 

http://therollingroa...01_archive.html

 

If you look it has a lot of unique features like the square topped rear wheel arches etc.

 

What is also interesting about that photo is that the location looks very much like the Pangshangar Airflield hangar used by Lotus service. It could be an old hangar at Hethel which would explain the " test track comment ( at Panshangar that would have been a runway) but the car was bullt in 1965 before Lotus moved to Hethel.


Edited by mariner, 02 February 2015 - 19:24.


#4 Rupertlt1

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Posted 02 February 2015 - 19:50

Have you looked here?

 

https://revslib.stan...sim][]=Lotus 40

 

RGDS RLT



#5 raceannouncer2003

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Posted 03 February 2015 - 06:27

More links here:

 

http://www.davewolin.com/lotus.htm

 

http://www.davewolin.com

 

Vince H.


Edited by raceannouncer2003, 03 February 2015 - 06:27.


#6 mariner

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Posted 03 February 2015 - 19:11

Vince thans for the excellent links. The digtal racing archive is pretty impressive.

 

from all the pics there you can see how much the 40 was modified from its introduction in th Uk at the Brands meeting ( where I think the transmission broke spinning it off) to Riverside.

 

Even at Riverside the spoilers semed to change size from pic to pic. - more " development".

 

The 40 would never had made a Canam car long term because of the backbone chassis. Not the rigidity issues which may have ben fixable but it only carried 13 gallons of fuel in the main backbone tank and 18 more in the under door panniers.for t 31 gallons total. The rapid rise in power and tyre widths plus more downforce drove CanAm fuel consumption up quickly resulting in 25-30 gallon tanks on each side.A t that point ony the Lola/McLaren type full width monocoque makes sense.



#7 raceannouncer2003

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Posted 04 February 2015 - 00:58

The digtal racing archive is pretty impressive.

 

Thanks to Rupert for that.

 

Vince H.



#8 63Corvette

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Posted 14 March 2015 - 00:57

In 1965 (I think) an SCCA regional was run at Scholes Field in Galveston, Texas. In that race field was a Lotus 30 and a Lotus 40. My memory is that the Lotus 40 was owned by Texan A. J. Foyt, who had burned his hands in a firey accident at indy, and therefore had another driver (Jack Saunders???) Drove the lotus 40 that day. It should be easy enough to check with A.J.



#9 raceannouncer2003

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Posted 14 March 2015 - 06:41

July 4, 1966, Galveston's Scholes Field - Competition Press & Autoweek

 

"…Jack Saunders took the win in the preliminary, driving A. J. Foyt's Lotus 40 with A. J. doing the pit work…"

 

Vince H.



#10 63Corvette

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Posted 15 March 2015 - 00:32

July 4, 1966, Galveston's Scholes Field - Competition Press & Autoweek

 

"…Jack Saunders took the win in the preliminary, driving A. J. Foyt's Lotus 40 with A. J. doing the pit work…"

 

Vince H.

Tom you have an excellent memory! I was Pit marshal for AJ's Lotus 40, as well as John Jrs cars at that race:-)