Ayrton Senna’s first Grand Prix winning Lotus back on track
Ayrton Senna raced his Lotus Renault type 97T chassis number 2 to his first Grand Prix victory, at Estoril in the 1985 Portuguese GP. Earlier this year there was a chance this famous car was headed for the Brazilian GP at Interlagos for a very high profile demonstration run.
Therefore we engaged with Renault Alpine Classic to have the engine refreshed. Retired Lotus Engineering engine guru Alan Nobbs undertook an initial strip down at Classic Team Lotus before taking the engine to Renault Alpine Classic himself. The engine was going home, to Viry-Châtillon, just South of Paris.
The highly experienced team there took on the exciting task of the rebuild of the Renault EF4 V6-Turbo power unit, one of the great engines of the Turbo era of F1. The EF4 spec is exactly as Ayrton raced it on that rainy day at Estoril, nearly 40 years ago..