Ferrari 312T2

Ferrari 312T2

by Luca Dal Monte

Starting from the 1976 Spanish Grand Prix, Formula 1 adopts new rules. The most evident change is the reduction in the height of the single-seaters, resulting in cars without the large air scoop that characterized the vehicles of the first half of the 1970s. The absence of the large air intake above the driver’s helmet leads Mauro Forghieri and his team of engineers to consider the two large frontal air intakes, which are likely the main characteristic of this car. With the T2, Ferrari continues to use the white colour, expertly combined with the historic red, and the Italian tricolour.

The 312 T2 is the natural evolution of the championship-winning car. The engine is the proven 180° V-shaped 12-cylinder boxer with a displacement of three litres, which, with its 500 HP, is at the time the most powerful among the engines in Formula 1. The T2 also benefits from more aerodynamic research, such as the slightly higher front spoiler, and significant weight reduction.

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Niki Lauda: As the reigning world champion, Niki Lauda begins the 1976 season by dominating it. With the 312 T2, he quickly wins the Monaco and Belgian Grand Prix. Mid-July, he clinches victory at the British Grand Prix at Brands Hatch. However, fifteen days later, he suffers the terrifying crash at the Nürburgring during the German Grand Prix. Despite returning in record time, he fails in his attempt to defend his world championship title.

Clay Regazzoni: 1976 marks Clay’s final season at Ferrari. With the 312 T2, he secures three second places at Zolder, Zandvoort, and Monza, contributing to Ferrari’s victory in the Constructors’ World Championship. He leaves Maranello after six seasons overall.

Carlos Reutemann: Reutemann joins Ferrari in early September, when no one yet knows if and when Lauda will recover from the Nürburgring fire. Called in to replace Lauda, he will stay on to take Regazzoni’s place in 1977. In ’76, he competes in only one race for Ferrari, at Monza.

Our model cars:

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In the spring and early summer of 1976, the 312 T2 is virtually unbeatable. However, it experiences a decline in performance during the summer and subsequently loses the supremacy it had maintained until then. But at the end of the season, the 312 T2 still secures the Constructors’ World Championship title. An interesting fact: at Monza, during the Italian Grand Prix, there are three 312 T2 cars in the race. In addition to those entrusted to the official driver pairing of Lauda and Regazzoni, there is an exceptional car available for Argentinean Carlos Reutemann.

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