Unraced projects of the 1981 season

Projects 1970 - 1999

As there are over 650 Unraced F1 projects from the period 1885 – 2020 I decided before to publish articles of Unraced projects per year. This is easier for you to see which attempts happened a specific year. Of course, it is easier for me as well as researching and writing an article takes a lot of time, which I don’t always have.  If you are interested in one of the summarized attempts perhaps, I can give you more info about it.This is the summarized overview of the Unraced projects in 1981.

Lotus – Cosworth 88B
We all know the Lotus 88, if not, the Lotus 88 was the masterpiece of Colin Chapman an effort to maximise the downforce produced by the ground effect cars. The FIA banned in 1981 the moving skirts of the car, due to the high G-forces the drivers experienced during racing with the ground effect cars. The Lotus 88 was the answer on the ban. It is well known for it’s engineered twin chassis. More can be read here. However, there was a second Lotus 88, which entered the British Grand Prix in 1981. The Lotus 88B. Accepted by the RAC the cars appeared during the training sessions. To be ousted very quickly by the FIA.

Maurer – Cosworth  MM81
Maurer was a German Formula two team based in the United Kingdom establish by Willi Maurer. Their first F2 car rolled out at Hockenheim in April 1979. The team booked some success in the series, though they were known for their beautiful cars. Gustav Brunner penned the cars, while Stefan Bellof was one of their top drivers. There are two stories surrounding the Maurer F1 project.  

Story 1 goes about the team modifying one of their MM81 F2 cars to be fitted with some Turbo engine.
Story 2 goes about a newly penned Formula 1 car by Gustav Brunner. While Stefan Bellof would debut the car in 1981 or in 1982. This story states as well that the project did not continue due to the fact that the team became very successful in the F2, having Bellof staying the F2 with Maurer. One of Maurer employees named Murphy would be involved later with the Ekström Grand Prix team. Motorsports published in 2004 a great article about Maurer.

Unknown F1 project
There is one f1 project, or study, that have been published in some Italian Magazine. The name of the magazine is unknown nor do I have any more information on it. According to the article, it is a futuristic F1 concept. It is a total ground effect design with extremely forward mounted driving seat. Fitted with a 2-stroke 5-cylinder in line supercharged engine. On the car is IDUA Racing placed.

Williams – Cosworth FW07D / FW07E
Williams decided to create in 1981 an actual six-wheeler. In the late 1970s and early 1980s several attempt were made to build a six-wheeler. The Tyrrell P34 is the only six-wheeler that made it to the grid. Already in October 1981 Alan Jones tested with the car though would still retire from racing at that point. In November 1981 the FW07D made it’s debut at Paul Ricard by Keke Rosberg and Jonathan Palmer.