1969 Lola T163 news, pictures, specifications, and information
CanAm Spider
Chassis Num: SL 163/17
Sold for $150,000 at 2008 Bonhams.
Eric Broadley was a designer, constructor, and a brilliant businessman. He had no factory or even factory-back team; rather he relied on customers exclusively.

One very exciting and challenging arena for the Lola-based cars was the Canadian-American Challenge Cup series (CanAm). Two early competitors in the series were Roger Penske and Mark Donoue. They finished second in the series' first year, 1966, and tying for third in 1967. Both 1966 and 1967 they drove Lola T70s. In 1967, the team won the Road Racing Championship with six victories out of the seven races.

In 1968, the team switched to a McLaren chassis. The McLaren cars were fast and often set the pace of the race. Competing with a customer McLaren car was difficult for the Penske/Donohue team, as they had to compete with the factory McLaren team.

For 1969, a deal was made with Lola to use its chassis for both oval track and road racing. The T70 had evolved over time and it was now a truly refined automobile; it was dubbed the T163.

The 1969 season was extremely busy for Penske and Donohue, as they competed in a Trans Am Camaro, Lola T152 and T150 for the USAC oval races, a new T70 MkIII for endurance races and the improved open T163 for Can-Am. Penske wanted more from the T163 and requested that Lola built a special extra lightweight version just for his team. Broadley was hesitant, but complied. He created a unique lightweight tub.

Due to a busy schedule, the Penske team was not able to have the car ready for the first Can-Am races. With little preparation and testing time under its belt, the car made its debut at Mid-Ohio in August. The car handled poorly and later broke a half shaft in practice and another in qualifying. Still, Donohue had qualified it in third place and just 3.6 seconds behind Denny Hulme and 3.3 seconds behind Bruce McLaren. Nine laps into the race a half shaft failed. When it broke, it tore up the rear of the chassis and the car went right into an embankment.

The car required more testing, development, and financial resources to be properly prepared for the very competitive CanAm competition. Penske, at the time, had many more successful and commercially more important obligations, so he withdrew from the remainder of the Can-Am races.

The lightweight T163 was sold to the present owner who was racing another T163. During the mid-1990s, the owner began a restoration which first entailed re-skinning the tub with thicker aluminum than Lola had used. The sheet metal gauge was increased from the sparse 20 gauge to 16 and 18 commonly found in other Lola T163 monocoque tubs. The owner theorized that this lightweight sheet metal gauge had been responsible for the half shaft failures. He believed that the lightweight tub was flexing, thus causing the shaft failures.

The restoration was completed in the mid-2000s. Since then it has only seen a few laps at Lime Rock.

The car is powered by a GM big block 510 with Lucas/Kinsler fuel injection and can produce in the neighborhood of 750 brake horsepower. The transaxle is a Lucas LG600. The car rides on modern BBS alloys and the brakes are Wilwood discs. The original lightweight monocoque panels were retained for reference. A correct T163 body taken off the original molds was obtained from Waterman in England. It is finished in correct Penske/Donohue Sunoco sponsored Lola T163 livery. There is Sunoco Blue paint, bright yellow Sunoco brand identifications and white numerals. In the rear is the unusual rear spoiler developed by Mark Donohue.

In 2008, this T163 was offered for sale at the 'Quail Lodge, A Sale of Exceptional Motorcars and Automobilia' presented by Bonhams Auction. The lot was sold for $150,000 inclusive of buyer's premium.
By Daniel Vaughan | Dec 2008
CanAm Spider
This Lola T-163 was one of the most successful cars built by Lola for the Can-Am series. The T-163's were part of a continual evolution of similar models designated as T-160, 162, 163 & 165. These were the first Lolas to use the big-block Chevy engin  [Read More...]
CanAm Spider
Chassis Num: 5L/163/18
Lola Cars International Ltd. was a racing car engineering company founded in 1958 by Eric Broadley and based in Huntingdon, England. For more than fifty years, Lola was one of the oldest and largest manufactures of purpose built race cars in the worl  [Read More...]
CanAm Spider
Chassis Num: SL 163/17
Sold for $150,000 at 2008 Bonhams.
This car was originally owned by Roger Penske and driven by Mark Donohue. Donohue qualified third at Mid-Ohio in August of 1969. The Lola had a half shaft fail during the race and did not finish. Penske subsequently withdrew from the Can-Am Series  [Read More...]
CanAm Spider
Chassis Num: SL163-20
High bid of $85,000 at 2013 Mecum. (did not sell)
Eric Broadley, a British race car designer and constructor, formed Lola to supply competitive cars to private owners around the globe. Between 1958 and 2013, Lola has had 6,758 entries in nearly 2,300 races, with two-thirds finishing the race; 512 ou  [Read More...]
By Daniel Vaughan | Nov 2013
CanAm Spider
Chassis Num: SL163/19
This Lola T163 is the most raced chassis in the history of the CanAm series. It started over 30 CanAm races, and still retains much of its original tub. While it evolved through many changes, it was recently restored to its original configuration. It  [Read More...]
The Lola T70 was replaced by the T160 in 1968. The following year, the T-160 which had undergone developmental improvements through the 1968 season, was dubbed the T163. Sadly, the T160 and T163 were unable to carry on the tradition of the highly successful T70. Though they scored several important victories, they were unable to provide real competition for the dominate McLarens and failed to capture the Championship.

The Lola T160, T162, and T163 were never able to score a victory in the Can-Am series, but were able to capture many podium finishes with many top-six finishes.

The final derivative of the T160 series was the T165 which was introduced in 1970. These were customer cars; the factory backed cars were the T220 and T222 with the T222 entered mid-season as a replacement for the wrecked T220. The T222 had a wider wheelbase than the T220 and its best finish was a second place for the Peter Revson team.
By Daniel Vaughan | Feb 2008
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1  Bruce Leslie McLaren Bruce McLaren Motor Racing McLaren M8B Chevrolet   Chevrolet   165 
2  Denis Clive 'Denny' Hulme Bruce McLaren Motor Racing McLaren M8B Chevrolet   Chevrolet   160 
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5  George Ross Eaton    52 
6  Christopher Arthur Amon    39 
7  Lothar Motschenbacher Dana Chevrolet Racing McLaren M12   Oldsmobile  Chevrolet  Ford   35 
8  Tony Dean    34 
9  John Surtees Chaparral Cars, Midland Texas McLaren M12   Chevrolet   30 
10  John Cordts    24 
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11  Mario Gabriele Andretti    22 
13  Peter Jeffrey Revson Agapiou Brothers Ford G7A   Ford  Chevrolet   22 
14  Dick Brown Ecurie Greene Inc McLaren M6B   Ford  Chevrolet   13 
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16  Pedro Rodríguez    
16  Tom Dutton    
18  Leonard Janke    
19  Andrea Lodovico de Adamich    
20  Jacques Couture Ecurie Soucy McLaren M1B   Chevrolet   
21  Kris Harrison    
22  Gary Wilson    
23  Oscar Koveleski Auto-World, Inc. McLaren M6B   Chevrolet   
24  Fred Baker    
25  David Causey    
26  Richard Galloway    
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