Willi Kauhsen has bought back one of his Formula One chassis and plans to return it to the track at this year’s Thoroughbred Grand Prix finale at Estoril in October. The car is being rebuilt by Mecauto in Belgium.
Designed by Klaus Kapitza, chassis number one (of five) was one of the most striking shapes in F1 when it was first tested at Paul Ricard at the end of 1978. However, the ‘signature’ positioning of its rear wing almost ahead of the rear wheels proved to be the car’s downfall. It generated insufficient downforce and never raced in this format (in fact, 001 never raced). The subsequent and equally unsuccessful Kauhsens had their wings affixed further back.
The Kauhsens routinely failed to qualify. The marque’s only F1 start came in the 1979 Aurora round at Zolder. It lined up eighth in the hands of Gianfranco Brancatelli, but posted the first retirement on only the second lap.
By midseason Kauhsen had sold his cars to Arturo Merzario, who reworked them into his eponymous A4.