This week, we headed to the British Motor Museum at Gaydon for a shoot of the Rover-BRM Le Mans car, a prototype gas turbine-powered racing car, jointly developed in the early 1960s by the British companies Rover and BRM. BRM supplied the chassis of Richie Ginther’s crash-damaged car from the 1962 Monaco Grand Prix, and a custom open-top spyder body was then built in aluminium, with the turbine mid-mounted ahead of a single-speed transaxle.
The gas turbine engine has a single centrifugal compressor, a single combustion chamber and a free turbine driving the output shaft, separate from the turbine that drove the compressor, and was rated at 150 bhp.
In 1963, The car was raced at Le Mans as an experimental car, and in 1965, the car was renumbered “31”, and was again raced, driven by Graham Hill and Sir Jackie Stewart. The car performed well, finishing tenth overall, seventh in the prototype class, and the first British car.
A huge thank you on behalf of all of us at BRM to the British Motor Museum for giving us access to this magnificent piece of British engineering innovation, and allowing us to capture such a fantastic piece of BRM’s history