Gordon Murray Automotive T.50

Gordon Murray creates a FAN car

Gordon Murray, known for designing the McLaren F1, has released new information about his latest design. Gordon Murray Automotive (GMA) is partnering with Racing Point Formula One team.

The partnership gives GMA access to Racing Point’s state-of-the-art wind tunnel. The press release also referenced Racing Point’s pinnacle of motorsport expertise, but they finished 7th in this year’s Formula 1 season. Not exactly the pinnacle.

The partnership isn’t the major news from the press release. The T.50 has a fan on the back of the car that is a part of the aerodynamics. There will be six aero modes that the driver will be able to choose. These modes will optimize the dynamics and performance of the T.50.

The fan itself is 40cm and called a ground-effect-fan. The new airflow management system works with the fan, the active underbody aerodynamics, and dynamic rear aerofoils. The system gives the T.50 more aerodynamic performance and control over a conventional supercar.

T.50 Aerodynamic Diagram

The T.50 weighs in at 980kg or 2,160 lbs. A Cosworth V12 provides the power and revs to 12,100rpm. Seating is Mr. Murray’s favored three-seat arrangement from the McLaren F1, and the car is rear-wheel-drive.

Formula 1 Experience

Racing Point Formula One is what used to be known as Sahara Force India F1. Candian businessman, Lawrence Stroll, purchased the team last year and installed his son, Lance Stroll, as one of the team’s two drivers. Lance finished 15th this last season in the driver’s standings with his teammate, Sergio Perez, finishing 10th with twice as many points.

The partnership appears to represent Racing Point getting to claim some part of the T.50’s development while charging GMA less to use the facility. The T.50 should be in physical testing early next year. After February 19th, when Racing Point heads to F1 Testing in Barcelona.

The car looks good. Better than the Senna. We will have to see what it’s like in physical form.

[Images courtesy of Gordon Murray Automotive.]

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12 responses to “Gordon Murray creates a FAN car”

  1. fede Avatar

    I hope it really is as small as it looks

  2. Zentropy Avatar

    I’m inclined to think that the fan doesn’t really do a helluva lot, but it certainly looks cool.

    1. caltemus Avatar

      Why? Fan car’s have been successful when used in racing before, most famously with the Brabham BT46B and Chaparral 2J, but they were both made illegal

      “…it soon became clear what the modified Brabham was intended to achieve: when the drivers blipped the throttle, the car could be seen to squat down on its suspension as the downforce increased.””

      “The 2J competed in the Can-Am series and qualified at least two seconds quicker than the next fastest car–but mechanical problems limited its success. It ran for only one season, in 1970, after which it was outlawed by the Sports Car Club of America (SCCA).”

      1. Vairship Avatar

        Wouldn’t it still have the same problem though? Sucks up any debris on the road and blasts it at the car behind. That’s not great in F1, much worse in everyday traffic.

        1. Monkey10is Avatar

          The problem of road debris doesn’t appear to have been addressed in the reporting I have seen on this so far, but there are two things to bear in mind:

          (i) there are already a number of ‘supercars’ which feature venturi tunnels front and rear to benefit from some speed-related ground effect — if these are already throwing dirt and debris at following cars then this is unlikely to be any different, [does anyone know? does this happen? …my guess is that outside of a racetrack the venturi is too weak and ineffective to pick much up]

          (ii) from the (admittedly vague) diagrams the fan-assisted air path appears to be separate from the primary underbody venturi tunnel. Depending on how air is drawn from the tunnel into this additional path (through a grille?, NACA duct?) they may have been able to design it to exclude debris and prevent it exiting through the fan.

        2. crank_case Avatar

          Stops people tailgaiting you, if I were a squillionaire, I wouldn’t see a downside here.

    2. Vairship Avatar

      It blows if you stand behind it.

  3. fede Avatar

    I hope it really is as small as it looks

  4. outback_ute Avatar

    Looks like an updated version of the F1 (edit – which also included a fan for active aero). And either the second or third time Murray has shown something like this. Who knows, if Stroll wants one it might go into production.

    1. Number_Six Avatar

      This one just looks like a giant paycheque for Murray, not that there’s anything wrong with that. I was just hoping one of his clever city car ideas would come to fruition; or barring that, at least something cool like a race series built around the Light Car Company Rocket

    2. Monkey10is Avatar

      Did the F1 really include an active aero fan? I hadn’t remembered that.

      Was it really adding downforce, or just located to draw air from the high pressure zone below the car and expel it into an area of low pressure? (Which as Gordon Murray would no doubt point out just “drawing air from the sensible location” and “expelling it in the sensible location”.)

      1. outback_ute Avatar

        They had a cooling fan for the ECU that did just that, as well as a spoiler that raised under braking and provided airflow from the top of the car to the diffuser, increasing drag and rear downforce to counterbalance the aero effect of body pitch under braking.

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