Lotus 87

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Lotus 87
Lotus 87 2008 Silverstone Classic.jpg
Category Formula One
Constructor Lotus
Designer(s) Colin Chapman (Technical Director)
Martin Ogilvie (Chief Designer)
Peter Wright (Aerodynamics)
Predecessor 81 / 86
Successor 88 / 91
Technical specifications[1][2]
Chassis Carbon fibre and kevlar monocoque
Axle track 1,778 mm (70.0 in) front, 1,600 mm (63 in) rear
Wheelbase 2,705 mm (106.5 in)
Engine Ford Cosworth DFV, 2,998 cc (183 cu in), V8, NA, mid-mounted
Transmission Hewland FGA 400 5-speed manual gearbox
Weight 587 kg (1,294 lb)
Fuel Essex (1981)
Valvoline (1982)
Tyres Michelin (1981)
Goodyear (1981-1982)
Competition history
Notable entrants Team Essex Lotus
John Player Team Lotus
Notable drivers Italy Elio de Angelis
United Kingdom Nigel Mansell
Debut 1981 Monaco Grand Prix
Races Wins Podiums Poles F.Laps
11 0 0 0 0

The Lotus 87 was a Formula One racing car used by Team Lotus in the second part of the 1981 Formula One season and in the first race of the 1982 season.

The car, driven by Italian Elio de Angelis and future world champion Nigel Mansell, was another step in Lotus' development of ground effect cars. Its predecessor, the Lotus 81 had proven to suffer from a chassis that was not rigid enough, compared to the dominant Williams FW07. Lotus therefore introduced a new chassis, built out of carbon fibre and reinforced by kevlar sheets, since the team felt carbon fibre alone would not be sufficient to provide the chassis with the stability needed. As the John Barnard-designed McLaren MP4/1 would prove, this was a miscalculation. The chassis was originally planned for the ambitious twin-chassis Lotus 88, but after the car was outlawed, it was hastily rebuilt to become the more conservative 87. The car was not competitive enough to fight for victories, even though the drivers did manage to get some points. When the new turbo charged engines of Renault and Ferrari became more reliable, the car proved to be yet still too heavy and was replaced by a lighter 87B specification for the opening round of 1982.[2] It was subsequently replaced altogether by the Lotus 91, which proved more competitive, recording a podium in its first outing in Brazil.

Formula One World Championship results[edit]

(key)

Year Entrant Chassis Engine Tyres Drivers 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 Points WCC
1981 Team Essex Lotus
John Player Team Lotus
87 Cosworth DFV
V8 NA
M
G
USW BRA ARG SMR BEL MON ESP FRA GBR GER AUT NED ITA CAN CPL 22* 7th
Nigel Mansell Ret 6 7 DNQ Ret Ret Ret Ret Ret 4
Elio de Angelis Ret 5 6 DSQ 7 7 5 4 6 Ret
1982 John Player Team Lotus 87B Cosworth DFV
V8 NA
G RSA BRA USW SMR BEL MON DET CAN NED GBR FRA GER AUT SUI ITA CPL 30** 5th
Nigel Mansell Ret
Elio de Angelis 8

* Of these, 13 points were scored with the 87. During the season Lotus switched from Michelin to Goodyear tyres.
** No points scored with the 87B.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Lotus 87". StatsF1.com. Retrieved 9 May 2015. 
  2. ^ a b "Lotus 87 Cosworth". Ultimatecarpage.com. Retrieved 9 May 2015.