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  BRM P57

  Article Image gallery (28) Specifications  
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Country of origin:Great Britain
Produced in:1961
Designed by:Tony Rudd
Predecessor:BRM P48
Successor:BRM P578
Author:Wouter Melissen
Last updated:Before December 1st, 2004
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Click here to download printer friendly versionBRM struggled hard in the 1950s to build a competitive Formula 1 racer. Their first two attempts both looked very good on the drawing boards but were never really competitive. The first BRM was fitted with a hugely powerful V16 engine but it was let down by components like the tires not being able to cope with 500bhp. BRM's car for the the 2.5 litre class, the P25, showed speed but it was let down by tricky handling characteristics. Jo Bonnier did record BRM's maiden Grand Prix victory in the 1959 Dutch GP.

Third time lucky? Yes, the P57 designed for the new 1.5 litre regulations finally brought success for BRM.

In 1961, the first year of the 1.5 litre era, BRM had to resort to an underpowered Climax FPF engine but they busy were developing their own engine for the 1962 car. This engine was a brand-new fuel injected V8 which stood out from the rest of the pack because of its characteristic howl. For the first few races the V8 was equipped with 8 seperate vertical exhaust stacks, but they were later replaced because they tended to break off.

As mentioned earlier the P57 turned fortunes for BRM around. Graham Hill scored BRM's second Grand Prix win, again in the Netherlands, exactly three years after Bonnier's first. He went on to win another three Championship rounds. He also won the Driver's World Championship and BRM took the Constructors' crown.

For the 1963 the P57 was extensively modified with the spaceframe chassis being replaced by a monocoque. Hill took victories at the Monaco and US Grands Prix in 1963 and again in 1964 and 1965. The arrival of the new 3 litre regulations in 1966 ended BRM's good years and their cars were only sporadically in contention for victories.

This P57 is seen here put through its paces in the Spa Historic Six Hours where the attendants once again could enjoy the characteristic V8 sound.

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  Article Image gallery (28) Specifications