THE LOLA T180
All pictures copyright www.honda.co.jp unless otherwise stated.
The T180 at the Honda museum. Note the high rear wing, nose wings and the extended roll hoop (presumably for demonstration runs).
The T130/RA300 was only ever intended as a stop-gap measure so, for 1968, Lola and Honda introduced the T180/RA301. Most obvious change was the new four-valve V12 engine from Honda using newly designed block and cylinder heads that produced a claimed 420 bhp with (much needed) improved torque characteristics. The four overhead cams were driven by gears up the centre of the engine and employed torsion-bar valve springs that Honda had developed on their very successful F2 engines, as in 1967 a Honda five-speed clutch and gearbox were fitted.
The most noticeable changes to the new Lola monocoque (chassis F-801) were moving the front spring/dampers outboard, extending the tub rearwards of the cockpit and using a double wishbone system at the rear and, of course, during the year it acquired a large rear wing mounted on the rear uprights and "winglets" on the nosecone. The entire package weighed in at 41 kg lighter than the T130/RA300.
Results for the car were generally disappointing with a best of second for John Surtees in the French GP being the highlight.
During the season a second tub (chassis F-802) was built up by Len Terry at the Honda Racing premises at Slough employing magnesium in the tub instead of aluminium to further lighten the car, perhaps a strange choice following the terrible accident to Jo Schlesser in the French GP in the magnesium chassied RA302. It only raced twice and was no more competitive than the Lola-built car.
Year(s) of Construction: 1968
Total Built: 1 (F-801 - see text above for explanation of F-802)
|Track (front / rear):
|1440 / 1400 mm
|530 kg (magnesium chassis?)
|Vertical liquid-cooled 90-degree V12 cylinder, DOHC 48 valve
|Engine output (end of season):
|440 bhp @ 11,500 rpm
SIGNIFICANT T180 RESULTS
|Spanish Grand Prix, Jarama
|Monaco Grand Prix, Monte Carlo
|Belgian Grand Prix, Spa-Francorchamps
|Dutch Grand Prix, Zandvoort
|French Grand Prix, Rouen-les-Essarts
|British Grand Prix, Brands Hatch
|German Grand Prix, Nürburgring
|Italian Grand Prix, Monza
David Hobbs (F-802)
|Canadian Grand Prix, Mont-Tremblant
|United States Grand Prix, Watkins Glen
|Mexican Grand Prix, Mexico City
Jo Bonnier (F-802)