The Prost AP01 was the car with which the Prost Formula One team used to compete in the 1998 Formula One season. It was driven by Olivier Panis, who was in his fifth season with the team (including its time as Ligier), and Jarno Trulli, who was in his first full season with Prost after deputising for the injured Panis for several races in 1997.
A die-cast model of the AP01
|Chassis||carbon-fibre and honeycomb composite structure|
|Suspension (front)||double wishbones, pushrod|
|Suspension (rear)||double wishbones, pushrod|
|Engine||Peugeot A16, 72-degree V10|
|Transmission||Prost six-speed longitudinal semi-automatic|
|Notable entrants||Gauloises Prost Peugeot|
|Notable drivers||11. Olivier Panis|
12. Jarno Trulli
|Debut||1998 Australian Grand Prix|
After the good results of the previous season, 1998 was a disaster for Prost. The AP01's main weakness was its gearbox: it was unreliable and heavy, which prevented the team from finishing races, upset the balance of the car and meant that the team could not optimise the position of its ballast, as many of its rivals could. The team also scraped into the season by a narrow margin after the chassis failed the mandatory FIA crash test three times.
With these problems allied with the relocation of the team's factory nearer Paris, the year turned into an exercise in damage limitation. A single point was scored for sixth place, at the chaotic 1998 Belgian Grand Prix, giving Prost 9th place in the Constructors' Championship. Only 8 cars finished the Belgian race with the two cars behind Trulli having spent so long in the pits being repaired their drivers were able to get out of the car for some time. In the final 6 laps Trulli lost an entire lap to the front runners with engine problems but still managed to finish.
Complete Formula One resultsEdit
(key) (results in bold indicate pole position)