Market Leader

Browse pages
Current page

1

Current page

2

Current page

3

Current page

4

Current page

5

Current page

6

Current page

7

Current page

8

Current page

9

Current page

10

Current page

11

Current page

12

Current page

13

Current page

14

Current page

15

Current page

16

Current page

17

Current page

18

Current page

19

Current page

20

Current page

21

Current page

22

Current page

23

Current page

24

Current page

25

Current page

26

Current page

27

Current page

28

Current page

29

Current page

30

Current page

31

Current page

32

Current page

33

Current page

34

Current page

35

Current page

36

Current page

37

Current page

38

Current page

39

Current page

40

Current page

41

Current page

42

Current page

43

Current page

44

Current page

45

Current page

46

Current page

47

Current page

48

Current page

49

Current page

50

Current page

51

Current page

52

Current page

53

Current page

54

Current page

55

Current page

56

Current page

57

Current page

58

Current page

59

Current page

60

Current page

61

Current page

62

Current page

63

Current page

64

Current page

65

Current page

66

Current page

67

Current page

68

Current page

69

Current page

70

Current page

71

Current page

72

Current page

73

Current page

74

Current page

75

Current page

76

Current page

77

Current page

78

Current page

79

Current page

80

Current page

81

Current page

82

Current page

83

Current page

84

Current page

85

Current page

86

Current page

87

Current page

88

Current page

89

Current page

90

Current page

91

Current page

92

Current page

93

Current page

94

Current page

95

Current page

96

Current page

97

Current page

98

Current page

99

Current page

100

Current page

101

Current page

102

Current page

103

Current page

104

Current page

105

Current page

106

Current page

107

Current page

108

Current page

109

Current page

110

Current page

111

Current page

112

Current page

113

Current page

114

Current page

115

Current page

116

Current page

117

Current page

118

Current page

119

Current page

120

Current page

121

Current page

122

Current page

123

Current page

124

Current page

125

Current page

126

Current page

127

Current page

128

Current page

129

Current page

130

Current page

131

Current page

132

Current page

133

Current page

134

Current page

135

Current page

136

Current page

137

Current page

138

Current page

139

Current page

140

Current page

141

Current page

142

Current page

143

Current page

144

Current page

145

Current page

146

Current page

147

Current page

148

From Mk1 prototype via F1 car, Le Mans and Indy winners, Lola found its niche as a supreme customer car-builder by the 1970s, as David Malsher (almost) discovers

Show me a motor-racing fan who does not enthuse about the shape of the Lola T210/212, and I’ll show you a liar. Oh, the Alfa Romeo shield as worn on the nose of the T33s holds more charisma, the Chevron marque may tug at the heartstrings in a local-boys-made-good kind of way, but on pure aesthetics, Eric Broadley’s firm put itself a lap ahead of its rivals with this aluminium-skinned monocoque.

The long nose is blunt enough to look mean rather than mimsy, and is balanced by the elegantly scalloped front wheel-arch. Above this, the top profile of the front wing curves down ever so slightly to meet the door which then rises at its trailing edge to meet the rear bodywork. That too, is gently curved until, on its only flat plane, sit little winglets, on either side of the engine bay.

Like the Porsche 917, photographs tend to fool you into thinking the T212 is a large car. It isn’t, as I was to discover when I failed to squeeze my posterior into the narrow confines of the immovable, unadjustable seat in Martin Birrane’s superb example. (this, the second such car Martin has owned, was purchased three years ago from Steve Pontin-Waltier.) But even so, a T212 appears large enough in the fibreglass to persuade the uninitiated that there is something bigger under that rear bodywork than an 1800cc Cosvvorth FVC. Butits 250bhp was enough to give Jo Bonnier, driving a T210, the wherewithal to wrestle the Chevron B19-mounted Brian Redman to the final chequered flag of the 1970 European Trophy for Makes. Lola missed out by just one point, but included in the Swede’s tally for the year were wins at Salzburgring, Anderstoip, Hockenheim and Enna — and a very close squeak at Spa: Redman passed him at the last corner of the last lap.

Bearing in mind Brian’s traditionally sensational speed around the Belgian circuit, that JoBo was able to make such a race of it lends credence to Redman’s assertion that the T210/212 was superior to the B19. John Bright, who drove the Lola for us at Donington, echoes his former business partner’s sentiments.

“The T212 is very precise as well as quick, perhaps because of the very stiff front anti-roll bar,” he muses. “Treaded tyres give it a very light feel, making it easy to handle in the slow corners. I drove a Chevron B19 a few years ago and that felt heavier, more unwieldy. The Lola is more driver-friendly.”

That ‘light’ feel to the T212— it’s 560kg with about 25 litres of fuel aboard — is not the sort to cause a driver any trepidation in fast corners. “Absolutely not,” assures Bright. “The engine isn’t heavy and it was excellent through the high-speed stuff. Its balance was neutral, and it was very forgiving.”

The T212 (a T210 with resited oil coolers and bigger radiator) was the thing to have by 71. Helmut Marko, driving a Karl von Wendt-entered model took the European Championship, and this Ecurie Filipinetti car, in Bonnier’s hands, clinched the last of five wins for Lola to present Broadley with a thoroughly deserved crown. The irony is that it was a Filipinetti car that robbed Lola of a Grand Prix victory at the Nürburgring nine years earlier.