- The Newman/Haas Challenger for the 1996 PPG Cart IndyCar World Series
- Powered Michael Andretti to three wins
- Piloted by Michael Andretti at 8 out of 16 events; additionally test-driven by Michael
- Newman/Haas Racing’s best championship result since 1993
CHASSIS NUMBER HU 14
After returning to IndyCar from Formula One, Michael Andretti continued his incredible form by finishing 4th in the drivers’ standings back-to-back in 1994 and 1995. As the 1996 season progressed, the Pennsylvania native once again proved to be a threat for the championship by achieving five race wins throughout the season. For the fourth time, Michael finished 2nd in points at season’s end.
Chassis number HU 14 competed in eight of the races throughout the season and helped Andretti achieve three race victories. The first arrived at the familiar Milwaukee Mile, where a third-row start provided a prime position to get up front. This win marked his fourth victory at the historic track and matched his father’s Long Beach win record. The chassis scored its next win at Newman/Haas Racing’s other home track, Road America in Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin. Another stamp of authority, Andretti’s win in 1996 would be his third at the track. The next event, the Molson Indy Vancouver on the streets of the Canadian city, followed just two weeks later, and with the championship still up for grabs, Michael needed to secure the best result possible. Starting on the front row, the race resulted in his final win of the season and kept his momentum going into the final event of the year.
As displayed on this chassis, the T96/00 further refined the aerodynamic and mechanical features over the previous year’s model. Up front, the central section of the front wing rose to meet an extended, needle-like nose, a concept which began development several years prior. Ford-specification cars featured an engine cowl which sat at a lower profile, allowing for greater air flow. The car utilized an all-carbon fiber construction with a monocoque tub and double-wishbone suspension connected to inboard springs on all four corners. To meet the demands of the various disciplines, a high-downforce specification was available for short ovals, road courses, or street circuits. For the superspeedways, alternative suspension geometry was utilized to extend the wheelbase and low drag wings worked to slice through the air. For a fifth consecutive year, the Newman/Haas crew continued its use of the successful Ford XB engine, a turbocharged, dual-overhead-camshaft V-8.
Offered without engine, chassis number HU 14 is an appealing representative of the T96/00—and one that, significantly, powered Michael Andretti and Newman/Haas Racing to three victories in the 1996 season.