• Year of manufacture 
  • Car type 
    Convertible / Roadster
  • Reference number 
  • Drive 
  • Condition 
  • Location
    United Kingdom
  • Exterior colour 


1978 McLaren M26 Formula One ex-James Hunt and Patrick Tambay

  • James Hunt and Patrick Tambay for 1978
  • Historic F1 championship winner with Bobby Verdon Roe
  • Winner of the 2010 Monaco Historic Grand Prix
  • Fresh total rebuild by Nine-W Race Engineering
  • Full history and new HTP papers valid to 2034

With the great James Hunt and Patrick Tambay for the 1978 Formula One season, this McLaren M26 is a Historic Formula One Championship winner, and is offered in outstanding condition after a comprehensive rebuild by Nine-W Race Engineering.

Successor to the double world championship-winning M23, the lighter and lower M26 was McLaren’s final pre-ground effect Formula One chassis. Designed by Gordon Coppuck with Cosworth DFV power, the principle used skirts keeping airflow from underneath to generate downforce. Formula One hero James Hunt had more starts in an M26 than the M23 he is usually associated with, and famously drove an M26 to victory from pole in the 1977 British G.P. An M26 gave Hunt his final Formula One victory at the 1977 Japanese Grand Prix.

Chassis M26-5 raced with McLaren throughout 1978, first with Frenchman Patrick Tambay and latterly with James Hunt, the 1976 world champion. Though M26s had three Grand Prix victories in 1977, results were mixed the next year as development continued and with the advent of the ground effect era. With a debut in the South African G.P. and fifteen appearances in 1978 (results reproduced below), M26-5 is notable for giving James Hunt his final race with McLaren at the 1978 Canadian Grand Prix.

Benefiting from continuous history, Australian racer Vern Schuppan purchased M26-5 in 1979, later passing to Alan Hamilton, an Australian Porsche dealer and racer. Acquired by Peter Heuberger of Switzerland in 1989, she was rebuilt by ex- McLaren engineer Kerry Adams of Adams McCall Engineering beginning her career in historic racing, and was later owned by Allen Lloyd (of Lloyds Pharmacy). Correspondence on file includes a statement by period McLaren personnel confirming M26-5’s team provenance.

Acquired in 2007 by the present owner and stabled alongside a ground-effect era MP4 driven by Hunt’s rival and friend Niki Lauda, M26-5 has been a proven race-winner, securing the 2009 FIA Historic Formula One Championship. Racing the ex-James Hunt M26 at Monaco ticked a major box, and she captured a thrilling victory at the 2010 Grand Prix Historique de Monaco.

M26-5 is offered upon completion of a comprehensive bare-tub rebuild and restoration by Nine-W Race Engineering. Works included stripdown and repaint of tub and bodywork, thorough component crack testing with certificates on file, new fuel cell valid through 2028, and a rebuild of the Cosworth DFV V8. The results are stunning and new HTP papers have been issued valid through December 2034. Spares include two new sets of split-rim wheels and a Monaco specification roll hoop.

Utterly fresh from the rebuild and wearing the iconic red and white Marlboro livery, this McLaren M26 will be a competitive entry for historic racing events. A rare opportunity to acquire a symbol of fun-loving and hard-driving James Hunt, still one of Britain’s most idolized and beloved Grand Prix drivers ever.


Period Race History



South African Grand Prix                              Patrick Tambay               Retired

United States Grand Prix West                      Patrick Tambay               12

Monaco Grand Prix                                         Patrick Tambay               7

Belgian Grand Prix                                           Patrick Tambay               Did not practice

Spanish Grand Prix                                         Patrick Tambay               Retired

Swedish Grand Prix                                         Patrick Tambay               4

French Grand Prix                                            Patrick Tambay               9

British Grand Prix                                              Patrick Tambay               6

German Grand Prix                                         Patrick Tambay               Retired

Austrian Grand Prix                                         Patrick Tambay               Only practice

Austrian Grand Prix                                         James Hunt                        Retired

Dutch Grand Prix                                               James Hunt                        10

Italian Grand Prix                                              James Hunt                        Retired (not used in r

14 Queens Gate Place Mews
London SW7 5BQ
United Kingdom