Page 1 of 1 With the Lola T70 introduced in 1965, Eric Broadley had a created a winner and in more ways than one. It scored numerous victories on the racing track and was also very popular with Lola's customers. The absolute highlight of the T70's career was winning the inaugural Can-Am Challenge Cup with John Surtees behind the wheel in 1966. Rapid developments in chassis design, tyre sizes and engine dimensions had, however rendered the T70 obsolete by 1967.
Short on time, due to the high customer demand still for the T70 in Roadster and Coupe versions, Eric Broadley quickly developed the new T160 for the 1968 season. Although employing the same design principles as the T70, the T160 was actually a brand-new design. The aluminium monocoque was slightly wider to accept the new 'big block' V8 engines, while longer suspension arms were fitted to allow for larger rubber to be fitted. Delivered as a rolling chassis, the T160 was fitted with a broad fibreglass body with a dramatic cut off 'Kamm' tail.
A rushed job, the T160 was not able to match the might of the works McLarens, although it still represented an improvement over the T70. Twelve examples were sold before the car evolved into the briefly produced T162 and more importantly, the T163. Ready ahead of the 1969 season, it was better adapted to the big block engine, which could be fitted a full inch lower in the chassis. The T163 also featured a tall rear wing. In the hands of Chuck Parsons, the Simoniz backed T163 was often the best of the rest behind the 'Bruce and Denny show' with their all-conquering McLarens.
With the tall wings banned for 1970, Lola produced a further evolution of the same design for customers, while readying the all-new T220 for the works team. Of all T160 versions, it is believed around 25 were built and while raced by the likes of Dan Gurney and John Surtees could never really challenge the McLarens. As the basic design remained the same, many of the earlier cars were upgraded and even after production had ceased existing cars were further modified with revised bodywork to keep them competitive. Some were even modified with Coupe bodies to create T70 Mk3b facsimiles. Page 1 of 1