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Saturday, April 16, 2022

Lola GT Mk VI was the design inspiration for the infamous Ford GT40

~The Forerunner~ The history of the 24 Hours of Le Mans race spoke in 1966 when for the first time the cars made by the American manufacturer Ford Motor Company won the championship podium as well as undermined the might of the Italian Prancing Horses through three Ford GT40 cars.
The Lola GT Mk VI was the design inspiration for the infamous Ford GT40. (Picture from: UltimateCarPage)
But did you know that the might of the Ford's racing cars was obtained after the American manufacturer along with racing legend Carroll Shelby did the development and testing of many test bed cars. In which one of the early prototypes was based on the British-made Lola GT Mk VI.
The Lola GT-P (prototype) shown for the first time at the 1963 Olympia Racing Car Show in London. (Picture from: Road&Track)
Those race car is designed by the famous British sports and racing car designer named John Frayling and built by the compatriot auto manufacturer Lola Cars Limited, then was introduced for the first time at the 1963 Racing Car Show in London. As mentioned before, it was a racing car corresponding to the GT Prototype serie and powered by a 4,7 liter Ford V8 engine placed behind the driver. 
The Lola GT Mk VI is designed by John Frayling and built by the British auto manufacturer Lola Cars Limited. (Picture from: Petrolicious)
The Lola GT Mk VI is built based on fabricated sheet metal pontoons at each side, joined by a stressed floor. Welded to the front of this structure is a space frame outrigger carrying the front suspensions. At the back the pontoons converge to carry the rear suspensions and the Ford V8 engine with Colotti 5 speed gearbox and transaxle.
The Lola GT Mk VI body was made of glass fibre reinforced composite with the sills carry flexible fuel tanks. (Picture from: Petrolicious)
Its body was made of glass fibre reinforced composite with the sills carry flexible fuel tanks. Initially, the carburatter got an air through a collector box from a roof intake. But this kind of air supply system was eventually declined by 24 Hours of Le Mans' racing scrutineers for lack of backward vision then was replaced by side air intakes.
The Lola GT Mk VI is built based on fabricated sheet metal pontoons at each side, joined by a stressed floor. (Picture from: Petrolicious)
The Lola GT Mk VI was extremely compact with a 3,85 m length and a 1,00 m height. As many as three Lola GTs were ever built at Lola's factory in Bromley, Kent, England and sold at the price of £3.400 in 1963 without engine and transmission.
The Lola GT Mk VI is powered by Ford V8 engine coupled with Colotti 5 speed gearbox and transaxle. (Picture from: Road&Track)
The Lola GT Mk VI was entered in several endurance races in Europe like  the Nurburgring 1.000 km and 24 Hours of Le Mans in 1963 where the car was not finished the race after got an accident when driver David Hobbs had trouble with gear change.
Then the American automaker Ford Motor Company purchased the Lola GT Mk VI as test bed for the development of their racing cars, the Ford GT and the Lola's founder and owner, Eric Broadley was hired as a consultant for two years.
He later returned to operate Lola Cars Limited that has since become one of the largest supplier of racing cars until October 5, 2012. After that, the majority of Lola's assets were acquired by a joint venture of Multimatic Engineering and Carl A. Haas Automotive. *** [EKA | FROM VARIOUS SOURCES | PETROLICIOUS | WIRED | AUTOCONCEPT | ROAD&TRACK | WIKIPEDIA | AUTOMOBILISTA ]
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