The Tyrrell 003 is a Formula One racing car which was designed for the 1971 Formula One season by Tyrrell's Chief Designer, Derek Gardner. It was effectively the same car as Tyrrell 001, with a redesigned nose section, longer wheelbase and narrower monocoque. Tyrrell 003 was a one-off design, its type number also serving as its Tyrrell chassis number. François Cevert drove the Tyrrell 002.
When Ken Tyrrell, the team's owner, was disenchanted with the poor performance of March chassis during the 1970 season, he decided he would design and build his own car. He employed Derek Gardner to design it in secret at his own house. The project, codenamed "SP" which meant "Special Project" cost Tyrrell over £22,000 of his own money. The resulting car named Tyrrell 001 made its debut at Oulton Park at a non-championship race. After the season had finished Gardner redesigned some sections of the car, altering the airbox, remodelling the nose section, lengthening the wheelbase and slightly narrowing the monocoque. The redesigned car became known as the 002 and 003, which were chassis numbers given to each of the cars made for the 1971 season. The team also switched tyre supplier to Goodyear after Dunlop withdrew from F1.
Driven by Jackie Stewart, it debuted at the 1971 Spanish Grand Prix and won at the first attempt. Tyrrell and Jackie Stewart took advantage as Lotus and Ferrari struggled during 1971; they won six races with Stewart claiming his second World Championship. Interestingly, Stewart and team mate François Cevert used different chassis throughout both 1971 and 1972, with Stewart having exclusive use of 003 and Cevert competing with 002.
The 1972 season saw Lotus back on form with Emerson Fittipaldi challenging Stewart for the championship. 003 was not a match for the developed Lotus 72 and the Tyrrell team only won when the 72 failed to finish. Fittipaldi won the title that season by a comfortable margin. Despite scoring four wins with Stewart during 1972, 003 had come to the end of its racing life. Tyrrell 003 remains the Tyrrell team's most successful chassis. It is also the individual chassis that has scored the most Grand Prix wins in Formula One history.
The vehicle is currently on display at the National Museum of Scotland, Edinburgh.
Tyrrell 003 was replaced by a number of cars for 1972 including the 004. The 004 was essentially the same car with minor improvements that was unveiled in October 1971 after the 1971 F1 season. Other cars include the 002, 005, and 006. The 005 was also Tyrrell's main car for the 1973 season, in which Jackie Stewart won the season.
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