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Little Classics News: 5 November 2014

BRM Preservation Appeal Passes £34,000 with More to Go

BRM V16 Type 15 racing car

The National Motor Museum Trust is appealing for donations to help raise £50,000 in order to preserve the museum’s BRM V16 Type 15 racing car. With the assistance of the Goodwood Revival, generous donations and fundraising activities have so far brought the total of the BRM Preservation Appeal up to £34,622.52, but more is needed to fund vital restoration work for this iconic Grand Prix racing car.

As the official 2014 Goodwood Revival Beneficiary Charity, the Trust has been able to set in motion the raising of funds for long-needed work to the 1950 racing car. The BRM, which was built with racing chassis number one, was famously driven by racing aces Reg Parnell and Juan Manuel Fangio. Skilled restoration is required in order to keep it in fully-functioning condition, including a rebuild of its supercharged 1.5-litre V16 engine.

BRM V16 Type 15 racing car on track

Only five examples of this pioneering British design were built, which means that preserving the sights and sounds of this BRM Type 15 is vital to keeping alive an important link to Britain’s motorsport history.

The National Motor Museum Trust was raising money for the BRM Preservation Appeal at this September’s Goodwood Revival with the assistance of the event organisers. The BRM Sweet Shop was selling old fashioned treats for the fund, while over 1,000 raffle tickets were also sold. Collection buckets were located around the show.

BRM V16 at Goodwood 1952

To promote the appeal, the BRM took to the circuit at the Goodwood Revival for demonstration laps, treating motorsport fans to its impressive pace and the legendary roar from its supercharged engine, both characteristics which made it a spectator favourite during its racing heyday. In the Revival paddock, a display of BRM V16 engine parts on the NMMT stand was expertly explained by the Museum’s workshop technicians.

However, it is anticipated that at least £50,000 will be needed to fund the BRM’s renovation and due to its complex design, more could be required depending upon what the Museum technicians uncover. If such work cannot be carried out, dynamic displays of the BRM in action could become a thing of the past.

BRM V16 Type 15

The National Motor Museum’s Manager and Chief Engineer, Douglas Hill, explains; “Thanks to the donations we have received so far, work can begin on the first stage of the BRM’s renovation. The engine can be removed and tested on a dynamometer to see how much power it is still producing, before the unit is disassembled and inspected. However, we still don’t know what will be uncovered during the strip-down so are uncertain how much time and money will ultimately be required. After the engine is rebuilt and refitted, the sophisticated oleo-hydraulic suspension needs to be completely refurbished, as it is in poor condition, while the brakes need to be rebuilt. Finally, if funds allow, the car will be repainted.”

For more details and to donate to the BRM Preservation Appeal, visit


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