1966 McLaren M1B Group 7 'Can-Am' Sports Racer  Chassis no. 30-21

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Lot 85
1966 McLaren M1B Group 7 'Can-Am' Sports Racer
Chassis no. 30-21

Sold for £ 172,500 (US$ 237,202) inc. premium
1966 McLaren M1B Group 7 'Can-Am' Sports Racer
Chassis no. 30-21
*Much recent work by Lanzante Limited
*New 5.8-litre Chevrolet V8 engine
*Fully refurbished gearbox
*Only one shakedown test since full refreshment
*Fresh FIA HTP

Footnotes

  • A stalwart of the Formula 1 World Championship for 50 years – of the current teams, only Ferrari has been in the sport longer – the company founded by New Zealander Bruce McLaren first rose to prominence in sports car racing, building a highly successful series of prototypes for the emerging Can-Am series in North America.

    But the team's initial success was in Can-Am, a series they dominated from 1967 to 1971. Bruce first became involved in design and construction when he bought the 'Zerex Special', a Cooper T53 F1 car that had been converted into a sports-racer towards the end of 1962. Bruce's next Group 7 sports prototype was the M1A. The team's first self-designed car, the M1A was another simple spaceframe design featuring wheels, suspension uprights, and steering arms supplied by Cooper, while the Oldsmobile V8 engine was retained, driving via a Hewland transaxle. Frank Nichols' Elva Cars was already building its own highly successful sports-racers, and he expressed an interest in the new McLaren prototype. The result was an agreement for Trojan (Elva's parent company) to build a production version: the McLaren-Elva, 24 of which were completed.

    For 1965, the design was refined as the M1B: a collaborative effort by artist Michael Turner working with team manager Tyler Alexander and designer Robin Herd, it had a blunter noise and sharper cut off at the tail, and was 20% stiffer than the M1A yet no heavier. The chassis featured a mix of large-diameter round and square tubing, with aluminium-alloy panelling forming the bulkheads and under-tray. Suspension was independent by means of wide-based unequal-length wishbones at the front, while at the rear there were radius arms, a single top link, and a lower wishbone. Coil spring shock absorbers were fitted all-round, together with anti-roll bars front and rear. The cast magnesium wheels were McLaren-Elva's own: 15x8½" at the front, 15x11½" at the rear, while Girling supplied the dual-circuit disc brakes. The 'standard' power unit was the 4½-litre Traco-modified Oldsmobile V8, though customers could specify Chevrolet or Ford engines if they so chose. The body was moulded in glassfibre, and the M1B weighed around 1,300lbs 'dry'. Trojan manufactured 28 examples, which were sold in North America as the McLaren-Elva Mark 2.

    When the inaugural Can-Am series commenced in 1966, it soon became obvious that the McLaren's Traco-Oldsmobile engine was not competitive with the 6.0-litre Chevrolet favoured by rival teams such as Lola and Jim Hall's Chaparral. After the opening races in Canada, Bruce switched from the aluminium Oldsmobile engine to the cast-iron Chevrolet, which although 200lbs heavier was considerably more powerful. The two works McLaren M1Bs were driven by Bruce and fellow New Zealander, Chris Amon, and although competitive did not win a race. Bruce eventually finished 2nd in the series to Lola's John Surtees.

    Chassis number '30-21' has belonged to the current vendor since 2015 having been owned previously (in the UK) by Richard Dodkins. Little else is known of the car's history apart from the fact that prior to 2002 it was privately owned in the USA. After purchase the car was taken by the current owner to renowned racing car restorers Lanzante Limited for preparation. Where it was found to have a recurring oil pressure issue, which was only resolved by replacing the engine with a new one. At the same time the gearbox was fully refurbished by BPA, while many other issues were addressed during testing. After missing the 2016 season, the vendor was reluctant to put any miles on his fully refreshed car and opted merely to carry out a shakedown at Paul Ricard and then list it for sale. Two additional sets of wheels and some running spares are included in the sale.

    Previously raced at Goodwood and complete with valid FIA HTP, this McLaren M1B is eligible to race in CER, Masters and, of course, the Goodwood Members and Revival meetings.
Contacts
1966 McLaren M1B Group 7 'Can-Am' Sports Racer  Chassis no. 30-21
1966 McLaren M1B Group 7 'Can-Am' Sports Racer  Chassis no. 30-21
1966 McLaren M1B Group 7 'Can-Am' Sports Racer  Chassis no. 30-21
1966 McLaren M1B Group 7 'Can-Am' Sports Racer  Chassis no. 30-21
1966 McLaren M1B Group 7 'Can-Am' Sports Racer  Chassis no. 30-21
1966 McLaren M1B Group 7 'Can-Am' Sports Racer  Chassis no. 30-21
1966 McLaren M1B Group 7 'Can-Am' Sports Racer  Chassis no. 30-21
1966 McLaren M1B Group 7 'Can-Am' Sports Racer  Chassis no. 30-21
1966 McLaren M1B Group 7 'Can-Am' Sports Racer  Chassis no. 30-21
1966 McLaren M1B Group 7 'Can-Am' Sports Racer  Chassis no. 30-21
1966 McLaren M1B Group 7 'Can-Am' Sports Racer  Chassis no. 30-21
1966 McLaren M1B Group 7 'Can-Am' Sports Racer  Chassis no. 30-21
1966 McLaren M1B Group 7 'Can-Am' Sports Racer  Chassis no. 30-21
1966 McLaren M1B Group 7 'Can-Am' Sports Racer  Chassis no. 30-21
1966 McLaren M1B Group 7 'Can-Am' Sports Racer  Chassis no. 30-21
1966 McLaren M1B Group 7 'Can-Am' Sports Racer  Chassis no. 30-21
1966 McLaren M1B Group 7 'Can-Am' Sports Racer  Chassis no. 30-21
1966 McLaren M1B Group 7 'Can-Am' Sports Racer  Chassis no. 30-21
1966 McLaren M1B Group 7 'Can-Am' Sports Racer  Chassis no. 30-21
1966 McLaren M1B Group 7 'Can-Am' Sports Racer  Chassis no. 30-21
1966 McLaren M1B Group 7 'Can-Am' Sports Racer  Chassis no. 30-21
1966 McLaren M1B Group 7 'Can-Am' Sports Racer  Chassis no. 30-21
1966 McLaren M1B Group 7 'Can-Am' Sports Racer  Chassis no. 30-21
1966 McLaren M1B Group 7 'Can-Am' Sports Racer  Chassis no. 30-21
1966 McLaren M1B Group 7 'Can-Am' Sports Racer  Chassis no. 30-21
1966 McLaren M1B Group 7 'Can-Am' Sports Racer  Chassis no. 30-21
1966 McLaren M1B Group 7 'Can-Am' Sports Racer  Chassis no. 30-21
1966 McLaren M1B Group 7 'Can-Am' Sports Racer  Chassis no. 30-21
1966 McLaren M1B Group 7 'Can-Am' Sports Racer  Chassis no. 30-21
1966 McLaren M1B Group 7 'Can-Am' Sports Racer  Chassis no. 30-21
1966 McLaren M1B Group 7 'Can-Am' Sports Racer  Chassis no. 30-21
1966 McLaren M1B Group 7 'Can-Am' Sports Racer  Chassis no. 30-21
1966 McLaren M1B Group 7 'Can-Am' Sports Racer  Chassis no. 30-21
1966 McLaren M1B Group 7 'Can-Am' Sports Racer  Chassis no. 30-21
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