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THE LOLA T440

The T340 and T342 Formula Ford 1600 had proved very popular and had won a lot of races so Lola needed something special to both keep up the track success and the sales! The new model was the T440 and details of the changes from the earlier designs are detailed in the Lola Press Release below.

Once again it proved popular from a sales point of view, but many drivers weren't happy with the handling characteristics and a number of cars were modified by moving the engine towards the rear of the car and several were given additional stiffening from the front bulkhead to the centre bracing hoop. Despite these problems the car was still successful winning in the UK, the US and Australasia.

Amazingly virtually the entire production run went to the US, only one car was sold to the UK ("E" spec), one to Australia, one to South Africa and ten to Canada for a racing school at Mosport Park. One was kept as a development car, one, chassis T440C HU1, was built to "C" spec for 1100cc Formula C racing in the US but the chassis number was then changed to T480 HU1.

A Lola Press Release gave the following details of the T440:

The new type T440 is a logical development of the T340 and T342 models and incorporates all the improvements from the development work carried out by the factory on all of its racing car types since the design of the T340, in addition, of course, to the specialised development that Formula Ford needs due to the particular wheel size and no wings regulations. The T440 is bang up to date with the latest sophisticated race car development.

In more detail, the main areas where changes have been made in design are as follows:

The most marked difference is in the weight distribution, this has been carried out to place more load on the front wheels, in order to take advantage of the equal rim width regulations and give a more balanced side force between the front and rear wheels.

To accomplish this the driver and the engine have been moved forward by incorporating a spacer between the engine and the transaxle with extended clutch shaft and clutch operating mechanism. Whilst doing this the extremely efficient cooling and ducting is maintained at the rear still achieving minimum drag.

The next most obvious improvement is the aerodynamic clean-up of the car with shock absorbers, springs, anti-sway bars at the front being mounted inboard, and being operated by the top wishbone in the form of a ball bearing mounted rocker. The steering box is mounted in line with the rocker so that there is minimum interference with the air flow between wheel and body.

There is a new streamlined tail that forms around the roll—over—bar to give a high clear air intake to the induction system.

Features that are not so obvious include carefully balanced geometry to obtain the best from the special racing tyres. There are two versions of suspension for English and American types as their characteristics arc quite different.

Considerable thought has gone into detail on this ear, particularly in the event of crash damage. The front-suspension, incorporating the rocker pivot, is built as a structure that can be replaced easily, this by simply drilling out the rivets and replacing as a unit.

The rear of the car has been considered also as both the lower crossmembers are detachable and allow easy access to the engine and transaxle, both of which are easily removable as a unit as well as separately. Again, the accent being on accessibility and repairability.

The detail of the fuel system, lubrication system and cooling systems both water and oil, have been retained from the previous models as they have been found to be efficient and trouble free.

To compliment the carefully balanced suspension geometry it was considered that a new front upright should be designed. Proprietary units have certain limitations and by designing very carefully, within the regulations, it was found that a very satisfactory unit could be produced, it gives all the advantages of full race car adjustment.


DIMENSIONS

Track: Front: 55.25" (140.34cms) - Rear: 55.5" (141.00cms)
Wheelbase: 91.75" (253cms)
Overall Length: 150" (381cms)
Overall Width: 64" (162.56cms)
Height: 40" (101.6cms)

As in the past, a full spares programme will be put into operation to run alongside production to ensure that maintenance and repair can be carried out with the minimum of delay.

Year(s) of Construction: 1976-1979

Total Built: 105 (1 to "C" spec - 1 to "E" spec)

T440 CHAMPIONSHIP WINS

YEAR
CHAMPIONSHIP
WINNER(S)
NOTES
1980 TAA FF1600 - Driver To Europe Series Stephen Brook Lola T440-Ford
1981 TAA FF1600 - Driver To Europe Series Phillip Revell Lola T440-Ford

T440 SIGNIFICANT RACE WINS


1976

DATE
VENUE/MEETING
DRIVER
NOTES
20th June Brands Hatch - BARC Mike Blanchet Townsend Thoresen Formula Ford - Winner Heat 1

1977

DATE
VENUE/MEETING
DRIVER
NOTES
27th March Snetterton - Shellsport meeting Mike Blanchet Townsend Thoresen FFord 1600 - Winner Heat 1
7th May Oulton Park - Lancashire and Cheshie Car Club Lola T440 Mike Blanchet Townsend Thoresen FFord 1600 - Winner Heat One
7th May Oulton Park - Lancashire and Cheshie Car Club Lola T440 Mike Blanchet Townsend Thoresen FFord 1600 - Winner Championship Race
14th August Amaroo Park Lyn Arnel TAA FF1600 - Driver To Europe Series – Round 7 of Championship

1980

DATE
VENUE/MEETING
DRIVER
NOTES
24th February Sandown Stephen Brook TAA FF1600 - Driver To Europe Series – Round 1 of Championship
16th March Calder Stephen Brook TAA FF1600 - Driver To Europe Series – Round 2 of Championship
1st June Adelaide Stephen Brook TAA FF1600 - Driver To Europe Series – Round 4 of Championship
? June Oran Park Stephen Brook TAA FF1600 - Driver To Europe Series – Round 5 of Championship
? July Lakeside Stephen Brook TAA FF1600 - Driver To Europe Series – Round 6 of Championship
10th August Amaroo Park Stephen Brook TAA FF1600 - Driver To Europe Series – Round 7 of Championship

1981

DATE
VENUE/MEETING
DRIVER
NOTES
? February Sandown Phillip Revell TAA FF1600 - Driver To Europe Series – Round 1 of Championship
? March Calder Phillip Revell TAA FF1600 - Driver To Europe Series – Round 2 of Championship
21st June Oran Park Phillip Revell TAA FF1600 - Driver To Europe Series – Round 5 of Championship
9th August Amaroo Park Phillip Revell TAA FF1600 - Driver To Europe Series – Round 6 of Championship
13th September Sandown Phillip Revell TAA FF1600 - Driver To Europe Series – Round 8 of Championship

1982

DATE
VENUE/MEETING
DRIVER
NOTES
12th September Sandown Warren Smith TAA FF1600 - Driver To Europe Series – Round 8 of Championship


A set of T440 related drawings from the Lola Archives. Click the graphic for a larger version.

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