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  Article Image gallery (25) Chassis (2) Specifications  
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Country of origin:Great Britain
Produced in:1986
Numbers built:38
Designed by:Robin Herd and Adrian Newey for March
Author:Wouter Melissen
Last updated:July 24, 2014
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Click here to download printer friendly versionFrom the early 1980s, March was the leading manufacturer in Indy racing both in terms of victories and number of cars on the grid. A rule change ahead of the 1986 season prompted March to build the new 86C (for CART). It would face increased competition as rival Lola was gaining strength, while Team Penske would introduce a car of their own, using a proprietary engine developed by Ilmor and funded by Chevrolet.

While a ban on ground-effect aerodynamics was discussed, the changes to the regulations were ultimately relatively small. The underbody venturis were reduced by 30% but the most significant change was the introduction of the 'visibility box.' This referred to an area between the rear body and the wing, which provided more rearward visibility to the driver. What remained was the ban on full carbon-composite chassis, which were still deemed unsafe in case of impacts.

Responsible for the design of the 86C was March founder Robin Herd, assisted by a young Adrian Newey, who had gained valuable experience engineering Bobby Rahal's car for the Truesport team. They laid down an aluminium honeycomb monocoque with a carbon-fibre top half. At the front the suspension was by double wishbones with pull-rods, while at the rear wishbones and rockers were used. To create room for the visibility box, the springs and dampers were mounted on top of the gearbox.

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  Article Image gallery (25) Chassis (2) Specifications