A Benetton B188-01 is For Sale in the Motorsport Prospects Marketplace

A Benetton B188-01 is For Sale in the Motorsport Prospects Marketplace
Benetton B188-01 Formula One Car

A Benetton B188-01 is For Sale in the Motorsport Prospects Marketplace. That is correct. One of (in my opinions) the coolest Formula 1 cars that raced in the decade that when I was introduced to Formula 1 is currently for sale in the Motorsport Prospects Marketplace and yes, you can own it. The sidepods always reminded me of an F4 Phantom jet for some reason which to me made it cool but it was fast!

The Technical Details of the Benetton B188-01

The technical details are taken from Wikipedia and confirmed in both “The Complete History of Grand Prix Racing” by Adriano Cimarosti and “Formula 1: Car by Car 1980-89” by Peter Higham. Price is available on request so you might want to confirm things like the engine with the seller before purchase and otherwise do your own due diligence. The seller can be contacted through the Inquire About Listing and the Invite to Chat service found on the listing for the car in the Marketplace.

ChassisCarbon fibre monocoque
Suspension (front)Double wishbone, pull-rod
Suspension (rear)Double wishbone, pushrod
Axle trackFront: 1,816 mm (71.5 in)
Rear: 1,682 mm (66.2 in)
Wheelbase2,690 mm (105.9 in)
EngineFord DFR, 3,493 cc (213.2 cu in), 90° V8, NA, mid-engine, longitudinally-mounted
TransmissionBenetton 6-speed manual
Power585-620 hp @ 11,000 rpm
Weight500 kg (1,100 lb)

The History of the Benetton B188-01

The Benetton B188 is a Formula One racing car designed by Rory Byrne and raced by Benetton team in the 1988 Formula One season and in the first half of the 1989 Formula One season. Dating back to when the team started as Toleman in 1981, the B188 was the first car produced by the team not to be powered by a turbocharged engine.

The B188 was driven by the teams 1987 driver, Belgian Thierry Boutsen, and the hard charging, chain smoking Italian Alessandro Nannini, who had joined Benetton for his 3rd F1 season after two years driving the uncompetitive Minardi’s with their overweight and underpowered Motori Moderni turbo engines.

The B188 was a consistent performer and was usually the class of the atmospheric cars, a class which also included the F1 Constructors’ Champions of the previous two years Williams, and the up-and-coming March team (whose car was designed by a young Adrian Newey), both of whom were using the new 600 bhp (447 kW; 608 PS) Judd CV V8 engine.

Boutsen would score 27 points, including 5 podium finishes, to claim 4th in the Drivers’ Championship with five 3rd-place finishes, while Nannini scored 12 points, including his first ever podium with 3rd at the British Grand Prix (despite two spins on the very wet Silverstone Circuit) and a second 3rd place later in the season in Spain.

Overall with the B188, Benetton finished 3rd in the Constructors’ Championship with 39 points, 16 points in front of 4th placed Lotus, who not only used the same Honda engines as the dominant McLarens, but also had reigning World Champion Nelson Piquet as lead driver.

Benetton would have in fact finished the season with 46 points but both cars were disqualified from the Belgian Grand Prix for using irregular fuel.

The disqualification of the Benettons was not made official until a month after the season had finished, so many published records list Boutsen and Nannini as having finished third and fourth respectively at Spa.

Where Can I race the Benetton B188-01?

Admittedly having an F1 car like the Benetton B188-01 is cool but like a thoroughbred horse it needs to get on a track and flex its mechanical muscle. It does fall into a weird category where currently it is too recent to race in Masters Historic Formula One and yet too old to race in the Boss GP Racing Series but fear not as you have some options (assuming you don’t own your own track).

One option is the Masters Single Seaters Demos run by the very same fine people who run Masters Historic Racing. According to MHR:

Masters Single Seater Demos is the ultimate place for more modern single-seaters from the past half century! Creating a home for a wide range of single seater cars from F1 to F3000 and GP2 to Indy Cars, the Masters Single Seater Demos will offer 2 x 20 minute track sessions at a variety of events this season.

Masters Single Seater Demos is a new initiative guaranteed to put on a fantastic show, as well as an amazing noise, bringing to live a new era of cars for Masters!


All drivers must be in possession of a current circuit racing licence, minimum level of Race National, or ASN equivalent.

Masters Historic Racing

For 2020 they have opportunities to run at circuits like Brands Hatch, Zandvoort, Jerez and Portimao.

Another option is to run it at what Road & Track dubs a “High Performance Country Club.” While the list they recently published only features clubs in the United States, I am working on additions to the directory that will give you a global list of tracks and clubs that will allow you to hit the track and pretend you are Thierry Boutsen. Of course, if you can afford to buy this car you probably already have your track plans worked out but I will have you covered just in case.

Wherever you race it, it is not often you get a chance to own an iconic Formula 1 car like the Benetton B188-01 let alone drive it at speed so check out at the listing and contact the seller and make your Formula 1 dreams happen today!

Mark Boudreau
Author: Mark Boudreau

Mark is the publisher of Motorsport Prospects. As a former lawyer, he applies his legal background and research skills to assist race drivers by showcasing the resources they need to make their motorsport careers happen.