BRM had previous 16 cylinder engines in the form of a 1.5 litre supercharged 48 valve V16. The H 16 was essentially two flat 8’s, one above the other. It used components from BRM’s successful 1.5 litre V8s.
Jackie Stewart, among others, was underwhelmed by the H16. The engine was very heavy, too many cylinders and not enough valves was another problem. That said the H16 sounded marvellous and looked the part. With this t shirt we are admiring the skill of illustrator Peter Hutton and the exuberance of post war British engineering. The engineers and designers of this engine, Tony Rudd and Geoff Johnson complained their specifications had not been followed, particularly with regard to the crank cases. But it is the case the engine was the conceptual antithesis of Keith Duckworth’s Ford DFV8 which a year later, and for years thereafter, swept all before it. Jim Clark gave the H16 its only victory in a Lotus 43 at Watkins Glen in 1966.
Peter Hutton has been one of the UK’s leading illustrators since the late 1950’s. His reputation as an illustrator among the community of owners of historic vehicles is such that they are happy to partially disassemble their cars and bikes to allow him to deliver his take on the key components. In his own words. “Although I take some photos I do sit and draw the car, to draw is to understand how components fit together, you see things you cannot see in a photograph, drawing requires total concentration and an image is ingrained in the memory for when pen is put to paper”. It shows.