Unraced projects of the 1954 season

Projects 1946 - 1969

Since the early days of Grand Prix racing many attempts were made to enter the Formula One and pre-war Grand Prix era. The period 1885 – 2021 contains over 650 Unraced projects. Every now and then new projects appear on the surface. To share with you all the stories i decided to summarize the stories per year. Don’t you worry, all the stories will be researched and eventually published. This is the summarized overview of the 1954 season.

Alfa Romeo 160
In 1954 new regulations were introduced in the Formula One. A new 2,5-litre F1 would be introduced. The Alfa Romeo, which was a typical cigar shaped design, would be fitted with their flat V12 engine. This engine would power all the four wheels of the car. The driver was seated behind the rear-differential. Prior the Alfa Romeo 160 Consalvo Sanesi tested the “new” seating position of the driver already in 1953 with the Alfa Romeo 159. While rumours state that the car is build. There don’t exist photographs of this car.

Connaught – Climax J3
For 1954 Connaught was working on a new car in anticipation of Climax’s forthcoming 2,5-litre V8 engine. Best known as the Godiva. Already in the early 1950s teams were working out a concept to place the engine behind the driver, instead in front of them. The Connaught J3 would be fitted with the engine behind the driver as well.

HWM – Climax
Similar story for the Connaught J3 car, the HWM was to be fitted with the Godiva engine as well before it fell through. I don’t have much info available for this project. When I have the time I will see if I can uncover more.

Kieft – Climax
The Kieft Climax is maybe the best known unraced project of the 1950s. Similar to several teams in that year they were aiming to use the Godiva V8 engine. Up to the point that the company withdrew for lacking power. However, the Kieft Company already started working on their car. The GP1 chassis, as Bonhams named it, was completed. In 2012, the car was sold for €219.264 euro’s!

Pegaso Z-105
What can I say about this project? The Pegaso Z-105 was on the entry list for the Spanish Grand Prix of 1954. However, the car never appeared on the grid for the race. The Pegaso F1 car was a collaboration between former Alfa Romeo designer Wilfredo Ricard and Spanish truck manufacturer Pegaso. The car only existed on paper, as there was no financial backing from Spanish companies. What is interesting is the fact that the car was based on the stillborn Alfa Romeo 512. More on this car will follow hopefully soon.

VM – Tatra
Im not sure how to prenounce the car. Is it a VM – Tatra or is the Tatra 607 – VM? If you know let me know. What I do know is that VM stands for Viglielmo Matozza and that the car was based on the Tatra 607. Even more interesting the car arrived at Chimay attended to race. It is really a sad story. Due to the fact, the car was only completed short for the Grand Prix. Matozza arrived late at night at the circuit. Only hours before the official qualification would happen.  He went to sleep, and when he woke up the official training was already over. That was basically it for the car. It never appeared again in an official Grand Prix. Read the story here.