Buy This 1964 Lotus 34 And Own A Piece Of Indy History [60+ Pics]

For the first half of its hundred-year history, the Indianapolis 500 was won in front-engined “specials.” By now, of course, they’re all mid/rear-engined. So when did they change? When Lotus got involved in the mid-1960s with cars like this one here.

What you’re looking at, race fans, is a 1964 Lotus Type 34 – specifically the one in which the legendary AJ Foyt took pole position at the Brickyard in 1965, setting a new record at 161.233 miles per hour. And it’s coming up for auction.

Voted by fans as the greatest Indy driver of all time, AJ Foyt remains one of the most accomplished racers in American history. Over the course of his distinguished career, he won the Indy 500 four times, along with the Daytona 500, the 24 Hours of Daytona, and the 24 Hours of Le Mans. With all four of the cars in which Foyt won the Indy 500 on permanent display at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway Museum, this could be the most prominent of his cars ever to come up for auction.

Jim Clark, Dan Gurney, and Parnelli Jones drove it as well (most in testing), but there’s more to this Lotus than who drove it, though. It was part of a technological revolution that shook up American open-wheel racing for good. It started when Gurney – one of the first American drivers to make it on the international (read: European) circuit – invited Colin Chapman to observe the Indy 500 in 1962, hoping the Lotus founder would bring the technological prowess he’d displayed in F1 to America. Ford engineer and executive Donald Frey (one of the fathers of the Mustang) was at the race that year as well, looking for a way to get the company involved, and a deal was formed that brought Lotus and Ford together to tackle the race.

’65 would prove the year when their combined efforts yielded the most fruit. Foyt won five races in the USAC Championship, coming second in the standings to Mario Andretti. He took that record pole at Indy and lead much of the race, only to be forced out with gearbox trouble. Clark won the race – in another Lotus, the newer Type 38. It would be the only win Lotus would take at Indy after revolutionizing the format.

Foyt kept the car for decades, selling it in 1992 to its current owner. Now it’s bound for the auction block at the Quail Lodge a little over a week from now, when Bonhams (which provided all the photos in the gallery below) expects it will sell for a good $2 million.

Photo Gallery

  • I’mCallingYouOut

    2 Million dollars would change my life.

  • Howstar

    Those wheels and tyres, at first i thought it was a render

  • Blade t

    I’ll pass….

  • Sjaak

    beautiful………………………..

  • Sjaak

    beautiful piece of engineering, almost perfection, i love it.

  • AnklaX

    A true beauty.

    I don’t much follow American racing but this is a very pretty car. Maybe not as good looking as the 49 but still got it’s own thing going for it.

    Can anyone explain why the car is off center?

Koenigsegg Agera RS1: An Amazing Hypercar With A $10 Million Price

If you love quirky vehicles that are also exceptionally fast, then you pretty much can’t do any better.

Despite Its Age, This 1991 BMW 850i Remains One Smooth, Sweet Ride

Today, 296 horsepower from a 5.0-liter V12 doesn’t sound like much, but it sure was enough in 1991.

Porsche 988 Imagines The Brand’s Next Mid-Engine Supercar

This is a take on what a Porsche rival to the likes of the 488 GTB might have looked like.

Tesla Seeks $167 Million In Damages From Whistleblower Ex-Employee

Tesla is seeking damages as reparations for the impact its ex-employee statements had on its share price.

Here’s Why Ford Should Bring The 2019 Ford Ranger Raptor To America

Ford has its reasons not to bring the Ranger Raptor to the United States, but capability ain’t one of them.

Bugatti Chiron Hits 261 MPH, Sounds Like A Fighter Jet Taking Off

We still don’t know how quick the Bugatti Chiron is with the speed limiter removed, but it’s pretty darn fast as it is.

Can The Kia Stinger GT S Beat The Entry-Level Tesla Model S In A Straight Line?

We already know that the Kia Stinger is fast, but is it fast enough to challenge the Model S?.

Top Gear Dares To Tackle A Snowy Mountain In An Ariel Nomad

The Nomad can navigate some difficult terrain, but can make it in this challenging endeavor?.

Is The 2019 Toyota Yaris Good Enough To Challenge The VW Polo And Ford Fiesta?

The Japanese supermini is one of the most reliable commuters, but is the latest version more engaging to drive?.

Skoda Scala RS Hot Hatch Is Possible, Here’s How It Might Look Like

A Scala RS could be a powerful, and cheaper, alternative to the Volkswagen Golf GTI.