F1 cars that never raced

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    In the “best teams, worst cars”, someone mentioned the Mclaren MP4-18, a car that was built for the 2003 season, but never raced. Does anyone know about other cars that were designed, or even completed, but never saw any racing action, due to design flaws, changed regulations or any other reason? The six-wheeled Williams FW08B is the only one that comes to mind right now, any other examples? Thanks!


    First thing that came to mind was a Cooper from 1963-ish: a monocoque chassis with some aeronautical materials, like aluminium honeycombs and glass fibre. I believe the car was built but never raced, simply because the team didn’t have the money for it.

    More recent: around 1995, DAMS (now one of the most successful teams in GP2) tried to enter F1, but the car they had designed was pretty dreadful, so they bailed.

    Might come back for some more, because there are plenty :)


    Thanks, @andae23, already looking forward to that!

    Oli Peacock

    Toyota’s Tf101 Was meant to be the 2010 pace setter according to members close to the team. Kazuki Nakajima said that it had the most extreme diffuser he had ever seen

    Lucas Wilson


    There is actually a book called
    Unraced by Sam Collins that deals with this subject.


    It’s a good book. Well, for photos at least. The writing has got a lot to be desired.



    Thank god this never raced.


    On that note, was there a Williams FW15, and 15B, that never raced? They went straight from the FW14B to 15C at the beginning of 1993.

    And did Williams ever build and run an F1 car with the flywheel KERS?


    Amalgamating the ones above with a few more:

    Brabham BT51 (1983 – mentioned here)
    DAMS GD-01 (1995)
    Dome F105 (1996)
    Ferrari 312 B3S ‘Spazzaneve’ (1973)
    Ferrari 312T6 (1977 – mentioned here)
    Honda RA099, RC1.5x and RC2x
    Lola T95/30 and T97/30 (1997) – The T95/30 was an earlier version of the car which didn’t have an airbox.
    Lotus 88 (1981)
    March 2-4-0 (1976)
    McLaren MP4-5C (1990) – Test bed for Honda V12
    McLaren MP4-8B (1993) – Lamborghini test car
    McLaren MP4-11C (1996) – Suspension change test car
    McLaren MP4-18A (2003)
    Toyota TF101 (2001)
    Toyota TF110 (2010)
    Williams FW07D and FW08B
    Williams FW15 and FW15B (1992 and 1993)

    I also remember one in an old Autosport called the Trebron, which was named after its designer but with his name spelled backwards (i.e. he was called Norbert), but that might have been an April Fool’s joke…

    I’m sure there’s loads more!


    Just remembered this monstrosity: it’s a 4WD car built by Cosworth. It was supposed to be raced at the 1969 British GP, but Costin decided to withdraw their entry.

    Also, I remember Aston Martin built a Formula 1 car as a successor to the DBR5 (had to google the name, I’m not an F1 database :P). I believe they didn’t want to race it because it was a rear-engined car, in contrast to their road cars which were front-engined. Anyone more info on this? Can’t seem to find it. :/


    There’s a long list of cars here:



    a very complete list here with pictures too


    Quite a few very interesting posts here, thanks everyone! I’ve got an extremely detailed answer to my question now!

    Max Jacobson

    I was actually very disappointed that the FW15C CVT was never allowed to race @roald! I think it would’ve been very interesting to see how much it decimated the field by had it been allowed for even just one race (such as was the case with the fan car)!


    A rare video of the Dome F105. It did sound pretty good!

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