Benetton B195

Benetton B195

by Luca Dal Monte

It is the single-seater with which Michael Schumacher clinches the second world title of his career and Benetton secures its first and only Constructors’ title in its history. Results in hand, it is the most successful car of all time for the Anglo-Italian team, which at the end of the season returns the English racing license and uses the Italian one.

The B195 is the evolution of the 1994 world champion car plus the many modifications made according to the new regulations, aimed at enhancing safety in light of the tragic incidents of the previous season. The project is by South African engineer Rory Byrne with supervision from Englishman Ross Brawn. New designs include the side pods, front wings, and especially the rear wings. A step in the floor of the car raises the single-seater by 5 centimeters from the ground.

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Michael Schumacher: It’s the second personal world title for Schumacher, who wins hands down and without the controversies of the previous season. With nine career victories, Michael reaches and equals Mansell for the most wins in a single season. Damon Hill and his Williams only give Schumacher a hard time in the early races. Michael secures victory in Brazil, Spain, Monaco, France, Germany, Belgium, the European GP, the Pacific GP, and Japan. He finishes second in Portugal. He achieves 4 pole positions and 9 fastest laps in the race.

Johnny Herbert: The English driver takes the place of Jos Verstappen (Max’s dad) and takes advantage of having a winning single-seater to have the best season of his career. He secures two victories, at the British Grand Prix at Silverstone and the Italian Grand Prix at Monza. Thanks also to a second place in Barcelona and a third place in Suzuka, he earns fourth place in the Drivers’ World Championship standings and contributes significantly to the Constructors’ title.

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But the most important innovation is the new engine. The reigning world champion team changes the engine supplier, switching from Ford to Renault, from an 8-cylinder to a 10-cylinder. By the way, the 67° V10 engine with a displacement of 3 liters that Benetton adopts starting from this season is the same one mounted on the Williams, its direct rival in the fight for the world title. The new Renault 10-cylinder with 690 HP is smaller, lighter, and consumes less fuel.

With some stability issues resolved, the B195 has no rivals. Seventeen races contested, eleven victories, 4 pole positions, and 8 fastest laps in the race. World Champion for Drivers and, for the first and only time in Benetton’s history, Constructors.

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