If you’re going to pick an unorthodox Formula One car from history to be the one you idolize and hold on high above all others, the Tyrrell P34 isn’t a bad choice. Aside from maybe the Brabham “sucker car” the six-wheeler is one of the best known F1 cars to change things up in an attempt at a faster lap speed. In concept this car was designed to be more aerodynamically slick, as the twin front wheels were short enough to sit down below the line of the front wing.
Did it work? Well Jody Scheckter won a race with the P34, the 1976 Swedish Grand Prix and his teammate Patrick Depailler followed him home in second. Scheckter later condemned the P34 6-wheel concept, called it a piece of junk, and left the team for the 1977 season. So... We’ll call that mixed results.
These things don’t often find their way back to the track, as most of them have been mothballed into collections all over the world. I’ve poked around one at the Canepa collection in northern California before, and it’s a really strange car to see in person, but I’ve never seen one run. This video is pretty cool, because you can hear that Ford powerplant blat its way down the straight (some of the shouty Ferraris overshadow it, however) and watch the weird double-ackerman steering operate.
Hit play and enjoy, because 6 wheels R best.