Bookshelf: Gordon Murray - One Formula

A close collaboration between the legendary automotive designer Gordon Murray and award-winning author Philip Porter, One Formula is a newly published two-volume blockbuster that has taken more than two years to complete. Covering in detail every one of Murray's 70+ designs, including those he never built, the books are comprehensive, detailed, punchy and fascinating.

Apart from the design story – much of it in Murray's own words – the books are packed with illustrations from his extraordinary archives, including pages from his notebooks, original sketches, correspondence, drawings and behind-the-scenes photographs. These are supplemented by stunning period racing shots by many leading motoring photographers.

The range and breadth of Gordon Murray's automotive designs is unique. From World Championship-winning Formula 1 cars to his extraordinary flat-packed vehicle for Africa, from his pre-eminent McLaren F1 supercar to brilliant tiny city cars, from the first sports car he built himself to his revolutionary iStream manufacturing system, it is all in these two heavy and ultra-stylish volumes.

Cars featured in detail include his 35+ Formula One cars, the unique Brabham BT46B fan car, the Duckhams Ford Le Mans car built for Alain de Cadenet, the McLaren F1, the GTR versions, the McLaren MP4/4, the OX, the new TVR, the Rocket, and many more.

The most detailed story concerns the $1m F1 – arguably the greatest road car of all time – and how Murray was persuaded to prepare several for Le Mans, where they remarkably finished first, third, fourth and fifth.

Murray's versatility is revealed by his designs for the first pit lane trolley, Supertrac, RS200, the Batmobile, soapbox racers, the MinBug, the Toray Teewave and the Mercedes McLaren SLR.

The foreword is by Murray Walker who touches on Murray’s wider interests outside motoring: 'He is very much a lover of rock music, ghastly shirts, fine wines and riding high-powered motorcycles – all of which makes him a top man for me.'  

First Edition: Two volumes, 948 pages, over 1,200 illustrations, slipcase, cloth binding. Price: £225

Limited Edition: In a stylish slipcase with end cap. A hand-bound portfolio with two poster-style reproduction blueprints complete with explanatory notes by Gordon Murray. Signed by Gordon Murray and Philip Porter. Each of the 100 copies will be hand numbered. Price: £750 

Unique Edition: In a suede-lined solander box with carbon fibre lid. Hand-bound books and slipcase, with an original unique signed sketch by Gordon Murray, portfolio of blueprints, T1 model, titanium chassis plate and GMD enamel badge, plus portfolio containing reproduction passes and a collection of photographs. Signed by Murray and Porter, and hand-numbered. Limited to just 25 copies. Price: £2,500 

Publication date: May 2019
Two-book set, slip-cased, 948 pages, 300 x 300 mm, over 1,200 illustrations

Photos: Gary Harman

We had the opportubity to spend some time with Gordon Murray, and we will be bringing you our exclusive in the near future!

Gordon Murray and Philip Porter

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