RE: McLaren's Can-Am cars: Time for Tea

RE: McLaren's Can-Am cars: Time for Tea

Friday 23rd November

McLaren's Can-Am cars: Time for Tea

Half a century after McLaren dominated North America, the brand's Can-Am cars are out to celebrate



Is there a better way to celebrate 50 years since McLaren dominated the Can-Am Cup than racing your vintage competition car, complete with a Chevvy 700hp V8, at Laguna Seca? No, there is not. Just ask the eight drivers who demonstrated these monstrous McLarens from yesteryear on the famous Californian circuit.

As three of these drivers explain in the manufacturer's latest video, hustling one of these classic beasts around the Corkscrew is no easy feat - "all balls and skill" is how one chap memorably puts it. Although advanced for their time, back in the late 60s cars had far more power than grip and humble steel brakes to slow them down. Drivers like Bruce McLaren had to be extremely brave.

Kudos to the present owners of McLaren's old Can-Am cars then who continue to use them in the same vein. While we don't doubt the pace is a little slower now, hearing their big block V8s thunder along the pit straight at full chat is something we all need to experience. Get the kettle on...

Author
Discussion

HardMiles

Original Poster:

175 posts

22 months

Friday 23rd November
quotequote all
Big unequal velocity stacks / inlet trumpets = yum. Lots and lots of yum!

tosh.brice

152 posts

147 months

Friday 23rd November
quotequote all
Lots of yum - but why didn't we see anyone tackling the corkscrew?

Maldini35

1,856 posts

124 months

Friday 23rd November
quotequote all
Proper cars those

unsprung

2,571 posts

60 months

Friday 23rd November
quotequote all

"...the monocoque used the engine as a partially stressed structural member."

https://bruce-mclaren.com/can-am-cars/


Maldini35

1,856 posts

124 months

Saturday 24th November
quotequote all
Proper cars those
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Seb27

67 posts

129 months

Saturday 24th November
quotequote all
Fantastic, brings back brilliant memories for me of this years Revival.

I submitted an entry into a competition for my girlfriend to win a passenger ride during the winners parade on the Sunday, we won and she found herself getting strapped into the ex Amon McLaren M1B which has subsequently become a revival winner. An absolute monster of a car, I don't know if she realises how lucky she was to have the opportunity!


Neil E 99

82 posts

51 months

Saturday 24th November
quotequote all
Always loved these things.
And it makes a nice change from seeing videos of the "Ring"

Mound Dawg

1,859 posts

110 months

Sunday 25th November
quotequote all
We've got an M6B in work. It was originally owned and raced by Jo Bonnier. We run it in historic sports cars so it's "limited" to 5 litres and a bit over 500 bhp which in a 700kg car is quite enough.

Just to give you an idea how stupidly fast these things are, when Chris Harris tested the new 720 against the P1 at Portimao on Top Gear his lap times were 2 seconds slower than our qualifier there. Remember that this is a 50 year old car on historic type treaded tyres and no aero, the FIA people made us take the Gurney Flap off.

Here it is with the car people most associate with us.


Mave

6,127 posts

151 months

Sunday 25th November
quotequote all
There's a great you tube video showing in car footage at Laguna Seca. Ad well as the fantastic noise, one thing that struck me is how small these things are. Fab machines :-)

SHutchinson

1,620 posts

120 months

Sunday 25th November
quotequote all
Mave said:
There's a great you tube video showing in car footage at Laguna Seca. Ad well as the fantastic noise, one thing that struck me is how small these things are. Fab machines :-)
Conversely, I visited the MTC recently and had a good look around their Can Am cars, I was surprised by how large they are!

chevronb37

6,375 posts

122 months

Sunday 25th November
quotequote all
Seb27 said:
Fantastic, brings back brilliant memories for me of this years Revival.

I submitted an entry into a competition for my girlfriend to win a passenger ride during the winners parade on the Sunday, we won and she found herself getting strapped into the ex Amon McLaren M1B which has subsequently become a revival winner. An absolute monster of a car, I don't know if she realises how lucky she was to have the opportunity!

I loved the pair of bright orange, classic Goodwin, helmets together - snapped a pic. What an opportunity for her!


Seb27

67 posts

129 months

Sunday 25th November
quotequote all
chevronb37 said:
I loved the pair of bright orange, classic Goodwin, helmets together - snapped a pic. What an opportunity for her!
That’s great! Thanks for posting the pic smile

coppice

4,867 posts

80 months

Sunday 25th November
quotequote all
After wandering around race tracks since 1968 it's not often I am stopped in my tracks by the sound of a racing engine firing up. But two years ago I was standing a foot or so away from Andy Newall's M8F at Silverstone when its big block 8.8litre Chevy V8 was woken up. Normally one expects a bit of chuntering and popping from old racers but not this one - an instant, seismic bellow , silly grins everywhere and fingers hastily stuck in many ears . And people think an AMG Merc is loud ....

chevronb37

6,375 posts

122 months

Sunday 25th November
quotequote all
Seb27 said:
chevronb37 said:
I loved the pair of bright orange, classic Goodwin, helmets together - snapped a pic. What an opportunity for her!
That’s great! Thanks for posting the pic smile
Pleasure - hope she enjoyed it :-)

chevronb37

6,375 posts

122 months

Sunday 25th November
quotequote all
coppice said:
After wandering around race tracks since 1968 it's not often I am stopped in my tracks by the sound of a racing engine firing up. But two years ago I was standing a foot or so away from Andy Newall's M8F at Silverstone when its big block 8.8litre Chevy V8 was woken up. Normally one expects a bit of chuntering and popping from old racers but not this one - an instant, seismic bellow , silly grins everywhere and fingers hastily stuck in many ears . And people think an AMG Merc is loud ....
Newall is one of the few guys I’ve seen to really wring the neck of a late-era Can Am car. Watching him broadside out of the Old Hairpin a few years ago gave me goosebumps every lap. Calum Lockie turning 100mph laps of Oulton Park in the March 717 at the Gold Cup was pretty special too.

The Banks boys in the Bonnier car were on tremendous form at the Classic. I was stood at the turn-in point of Copse and they were both balancing it beautifully, right on the ragged edge. They’d have walked that race had they finished.

unsprung

2,571 posts

60 months

Monday 26th November
quotequote all
with all the talk of engine sound, I thought I'd investigate this further online

the following is wicked -- visually, aurally

what, at first, seems to be the engine is not (wait for it)

video here
https://youtu.be/FKOki34YkK4


dinkel

24,745 posts

194 months

Monday 26th November
quotequote all
Algarve Historic, Portinao 2010

Michiel Campagne rushing by in his M8F.


Ex-Teddy Pillette Interseries car.


"OK Michiel, how was the run?"


Massive 8.3 without the turboes: still about 750 brake on tap.

ChemicalChaos

8,881 posts

96 months

Monday 26th November
quotequote all
The huge power and low grip one could have fun with, it's the coupling with associated 1960s [lack of] safety features that would give me the heebie-jeebies.
At a motorsport event a couple of years ago I was reading a magazine in the corner of our garage, the cover feature was Can Am cars. I was approached by an old Aussie motorsport engineer who remembered the cars from back in the day, and he spent a good few minutes regaling me with eye opening tales!
In the name of saving weight (there being no minimum weight rules) the chassis were so flimsy that they flexed and often cracked during races eek

PowerslideSWE

972 posts

74 months

Monday 26th November
quotequote all
Maybe the best big block lumpy idle sound I've ever heard, sounds pretty vicious clearing it's throat a bit later too. Can-Ams are awesome.

M6B with an Eagle engine.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lnl_KVf9fbw

Plate spinner

12,876 posts

136 months

Monday 26th November
quotequote all
Fabulous cars!

This is a great couple of clips, flying laps of Road America

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5DBqJLUPkf4
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HBOA1Jqf63Y

Edited by Plate spinner on Monday 26th November 09:48