10 things we just learned about Lola and her cars

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Lola Cars has been Britain’s longest-running racing car manufacturer from its founding in 1958 to 2012. The rise to notoriety involved over fifty years of mastery in every conceivable field of motor racing, from starting from modest club classes and growing into powerful Formula 1 and endurance competitions like IndyCar.

Lola Cars has remained largely unknown to many around the world throughout its decorated history, possibly due to its lack of road cars. That said, Lola has made a significant contribution to the world of motor racing, dominating various competitions over the decades. We dug deep and found some interesting facts you should know about Lola and her iconic cars.


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The early days of Lola Cars

Lola Broadley Special

via Lola

Lola Cars was designed by Eric Broadley, a quantity surveyor who built the “Broadley Special” using Ford’s 1172cc engine and entered the car in the 1957 “Ford Ten Special”. He won the competition by driving the car with his cousin Graham. Immediately after the victory, Eric built a Climax motor vehicle, which formed the basis of the Mk1. A year later, Eric used his £ 2,000 savings to start Lola Cars Ltd, when he built the very first Lola car.

The Lola MK5A team

via Lola

In four years, Lola cars had built thirty-five Lola Mark 1 cars, which came with various configurations to suit the buyer’s budget. The Mark I became the first sports car to tour the Brand Hatch in less than a minute.

RELATED: These Are The Best Vintage Racing Events In The World

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Over five decades of automotive manufacturing

Lola Red Ball Special T90

via Lola

Lola Cars operated for five decades, designing and producing nearly 5,000 cars between 1958 and 2012. Lola grew from its humble beginnings, making small front-engine sports cars, to one of the largest and oldest car manufacturers in the world with participation in various categories of sports races.

Lola Team Great Britain A1GP

via lola

The automaker has been a major supplier of racing car chassis since its beginnings in the 1960s. Lola has made many iterations of single-seaters and iconic cars like the T70, among others. However, the impressive history and running success throughout did not save the company from administration and its inevitable closure.

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Disaster entry into Formula 1

Lola_T97_30 (twitter))

via twitter

The last few years under Erick Broadley have seen massive success, with Lola winning all four single-seater formula competitions. However, his attempt to re-enter Formula 1 with the T97 / 30 was unfortunate, and a financial disaster that forced Broadley out of the company. Martin Birrane bought the company in 1997, and he built Lola Back up.

The MasterCard Lola was one of the worst teams in F1.

Via: Motor1

Before that, Lola had given up building a factory Formula 1 car for years. But, they made a tangible contribution to the competition as a chassis builder for various teams, with 151 race appearances from 1962 to 1997.

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Massive racing success

Lola T70 red racing on track

via YouTube

Regardless of her unsuccessful attempt to reach the pinnacle of the FIA ​​world motoring event with a factory car, Lola has achieved enormous success in many branches of motorsport including IndyCar, Formula 500, racing. endurance and junior single-seater competitions. All was not catastrophic in F1, as John Surtees clocked pole position and two second places using the Lola machines in the 1962 season.

1970 Lola T192.

Lola also successfully supplied cars for single-make competitions such as the A1GP and Formula 3000 after 1995. Towards her demise, Lola cars were still competitive with the 2010 LMP1 and LMP2 designs, winning both class and outright victories. at Le Mans and at the American Le Mans. series.

RELATED: Here’s What Makes the 24 Hours of Le Mans So Special in the Automotive World

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The T70 is Lola’s most iconic car

Lola T70 Auction Front Quarter View

via Mecum Auctions

The Lola T70 was first developed in 1965 and gained instant popularity. More than a hundred T70 cars were manufactured from 1965 to 1969 and offered in three versions; the open-top MK II Spyder, the MK III Coupe and the updated MK IIIB. The T70 used a mid-mount Ford V8, similar to the successful Ford GT40.

Lola T70 blue and yellow on track

via the classic pilot

The T70 didn’t have the same racing success as the GT40, mainly because it took on the more superior Porsche 917s and Ferrari 512Ms. However, his popularity was not diminished by this, as he performed well on the right track. UK-based Gardner Douglas and Broadley Automotive, US-based Race Car Replicas and the South African company Universal Products produce T70 replicas inspired by the original car.

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Lola Cars driven by legendary drivers

1984-Lola-T8600-1

Via hagerty.com

Graham Hill was the first legendary racer to drive and win by driving a Lola car. His victory at the Indianapolis 500 in 1966 at the wheel of the Mecom Lola made him the first Englishman to achieve the feat. From that date to 2006, Lola enjoyed success at the Indy 500 with numerous race and championship victories with iconic drivers like Mario Andretti, AJ Foyt, Rick Mears, Nigel Mansell and Unser Senior driving their cars.

Lola B05-30

via lola

The most notable driver to ever drive a Lola car to glory was John Surtees, the only person to have won both the Formula 1 World Championship and the Motorcycle 500 World Championship.

RELATED: These Are The Most Performing IndyCar Riders Of All Time

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Lola built mini-GPs for the Malibu Grand Prix

1977-lola-type-506-mini-gp-racing-car

via Shannon

The Malibu Grand Prix was racing nirvana for budding racers. Here, hundreds of thousands of ordinary people and celebrities might have the impression that Mario Andretti has reincarnated by racking up millions of 55-second laps on nearly 50 small circuits spread across the United States, Canada, Europe. , Australia and Asia. Notable figures to compete included The DiCaprio and Tupac Shakur.

lola 506

via lola

Many automakers, including Lola and other start-ups, built the tiny cars to meet the high demand generated by the Malibu GP. Lola supplied 121 T506 and T506B super karts for the Malibu GP which helped increase the buzz around the competition.

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Brand and technical assets recently put up for sale

lola t530

via lola

In early 2021, Lola Cars and its assets went up for sale for $ 9.45 million. The new owner will take over a fully prepared and complete racing operation, including an operational wind tunnel renowned for its high-fidelity research and development activities with racing and aviation customers. Other assets include a 957 square meter factory, a high-tech seven-pot platform, among other equipment.

lola mk6 (automotive research)

via car search

Along with the operational assets, the buyer will be granted Lola’s incredible archive containing decades of motorsport feats, including the exclusive design of all of Lola’s iconic cars.

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Ford’s famous GT40 was a Lola

GT40 Mk IV vintage white

Via: Gooding et Cie.

Lola raced the Mk6 at Le Mans 1963 after driving it on the road only three times. Ford took note and, following Lola’s earlier success with their MK1, hired the Bromley-based manufacturer to build the Ford V8-powered 4.2-liter Lola Mk6 GT. This partnership then led to the development of the Ford GT40.

Classic_Sports_Car_Lola_Mk6

via classic and sports cars

The Ford GT40 continued to be successful in sports car racing for the remainder of the decade. The car’s most notable achievement was its domination of Le Mans, which it won from 1966 to 1969.

RELATED: These Muscle Cars Are So Rare Even The Best Collectors Can’t Get Their Hands On

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Iconic collector cars

Brian Johnson Lola Race Car

via Youtube

Despite their rich history in auto racing, most Lola cars are rare and relatively unknown, and often only die-hard racing fans have heard of the brand. The company mainly focused on producing racing cars to compete in premium global competitions. Thus, few examples of each model have been produced.

1965 Lola T70 Mark 1

Via pinterest.com

The scarcity of Lola cars is the reason why today legendary Lola cars sell for high prices. For example, a T70 sold by a private seller can fetch between $ 750,000 and $ 950,000. A T70 that appeared in a movie is worth over a million dollars. A restored 1965 Lola T70 Mark I is part of the rich collection of AC / DC singer and famous car collector Brian Johnson.

Sources: Hemmings.com, lolaheritage.co.uk,


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