Horse and Carriage/Form and Function: Lotus 18


This is brief complementary piece to existing thorough A&R article on the Lotus 18&20.

Here we take an opportunity to take a slightly more detailed visual examination of the integration of the major components comprising the design i.e.:-

  • Chassis
  • Engine
  • Suspension

Subscribers might like to see the directly relevant and integrated A&R pieces that complement and help structure this article:-

  • Cosworth engines
  • Coventry climax engines
  • Lotus 18&20


The Lotus 18 used both the Coventry Climax FPF and Ford Cosworth engines


Editors sketches of rear suspension and space frame chassis

Learning Opportunities

Our learning /educational opportunities are intended to be challenging thought provoking and requiring additional research and/or analysis.

These opportunities are particularly designed for a museum/education centre location where visitors would be able to enjoy access to all the structured resources available in conjunction with any concurrent exhibition.

In this instance we suggest the following might be appropriate:-

  • Why did Chapman consider the Type 18 his first F1 Car?
  • Explain the production volumes and success of the Type 18
  • Examine chassis design; how did this determine the overall body shape?
  • What did the 18,19&21 share?

Exhibitions, Education and Economics

In the museum context the editors believe that commercial considerations are both necessary and complementary with its educational objectives.

For these reasons our suggested outline Business Plan includes provision for promoting products and services which share Chapman’s ideals of mechanical efficiency and sustainability. In addition we propose merchandising that explain and interprets the technical, social and cultural context of Chapman’s designs in period. It’s suggested there will be catalogue for on line purchasing.

In this instance we suggest the following might be appropriate:-

  • See listing or previous articles on Lotus 18&20
  • Junior grows up
  • Lotus 18: Marriage of horse and carriage
  • Lotus 18: Champ at the Bit
  • Lotus 18: Horsepower in harness
  • The Lotus 18: Chapman’s vechicle for post chaise success
  • Lotus 18: Horse and Carriage –the Attitude
  • Lotus 18: Transport of Delight
  • Lotus 18: Chapman joins the chaise


The type 18 established Colin Chapman and Lotus in F1.

One hundred and fifty examples approximately were sold.

Their inherent quality, practicality and shear volume engendered success and momentum.

The Type 18 also shows Chapman as a pragmatist and serious businessman.

Leaning from the mistakes of the past the Type 18 was remarkable machine combining the best of theory and practice is a determined package.


Subscribers are directed to our detailed bibliography in previous articles.