Ligier JS29

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Ligier JS29
Ligier JS29B
Ligier JS29C
Category Formula One
Constructor Ligier
Designer(s) Michel Tétu (Technical Director)
Michel Beaujon (Chief Designer)
Predecessor JS27
Successor JS31
Technical specifications[1]
Chassis Carbon fibre Monocoque
Suspension (front) Double wishbones, pushrods
Suspension (rear) Double wishbones, pushrods
Axle track Front: 1,790 mm (70 in)
Rear: 1,665 mm (65.6 in)
Wheelbase 2,835 mm (111.6 in)
Engine Megatron, 1,499 cc (91.5 cu in), Straight 4, turbo (4.0 Bar turbo limited), mid-engine, longitudinally mounted
Transmission Ligier / Hewland 6-speed manual
Weight 540 kg (1,190 lb)
Fuel Wintershall / Castrol
Tyres Goodyear
Competition history
Notable entrants Ligier Loto
Notable drivers 25. France René Arnoux
26. Italy Piercarlo Ghinzani
Debut 1987 San Marino Grand Prix
Races Wins Poles Fastest laps
15 0 0 0
Constructors' Championships 0
Drivers' Championships 0

The Ligier JS29 was a Formula One car designed by Michel Tétu and Michel Beaujon for the Ligier team for use in the 1987 season. The JS29 was originally to be powered by a brand new turbocharged Alfa-Romeo 415T 4cyl engine. However, during pre-season testing lead driver René Arnoux compared the engine to used food which gave an Alfa's parent company Fiat the excuse they had been looking for to pull the plug on the project. It was reported at the time that Fiat did not want Alfa Romeo involved in Formula One as a competitor to Ferrari who they also owned.

As a result of losing their engine supply so close to the start of the season, Ligier had to come up with an engine in order to compete. The team managed to get a supply of Megatron Straight 4 turbo engines for the season (the Megatron engine was the old BMW M12 engine formerly used by such teams as Brabham. They had been acquired from BMW by Arrows major sponsor, American insurance company USF&G, and were re-branded Megatron for 1987 and 1988). The updated car with the Megatron engine was now called the JS29B. Arnoux was retained for the season and he was joined by Italian veteran Piercarlo Ghinzani.

The JS29 should have made its debut at the 1987 Brazilian Grand Prix using the Alfa Romeo 890T V8 engine until the 415T was ready. However, following Arnoux's unfavourable comments, and Fiat's withdrawal, this meant that the team had no engine with which to compete until the second race in San Marino. It was there that the JS29B with its Megatron engine would make its competition debut. The JS29B was updated following the Detroit Grand Prix to its final JS29C specifications. While the JS29 was originally designed for the 4cyl Alfa engine, it wasn't simply a case of slotting in the 4cyl Megatron engine in its place. Major differences in the 'plumbing' of the two engines caused the team to have to redesign the car, including its rear suspension, as the Megatron was causing bad vibrations which was causing suspension failures.

Ligier would only score 1 point in 1987 when Arnoux finished 6th in the Belgian Grand Prix using the JS29B. The JS29C was the last turbo powered car made by Ligier. It was replaced in the 1988 season by the Judd CV V8 powered Ligier JS31.


Complete Formula One World Championship results[edit]

(key)

Year Team Chassis Engine Drivers 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 Pts. WCC
1987 Ligier Loto Megatron
S4 tc
BRA SMR BEL MON DET FRA GBR GER HUN AUT ITA POR ESP MEX JPN AUS 1 11th
JS29B René Arnoux DNS 6 11 10
JS29C Ret Ret Ret Ret 10 10 Ret Ret Ret Ret Ret
JS29B Piercarlo Ghinzani Ret 7 12 Ret
JS29C Ret DSQ Ret 12 8 8 Ret Ret Ret 13 Ret

References[edit]

Books
  • Roebuck, Nigel (ed.) (1988). Grand Prix World Championship 1987-88. Garry Sparke & Associates. ISBN 0-908081-27-8. 

External links[edit]