Formula Vee Specifications

What is a Fomula Vee? A formula vee is a purpose built single seater formula race car. Formula Vee is a SCCA class that was started in the mid 60’s. It is a restricted class based on running gear from a 1965 Type 1 VW Beetle. How restricted you ask, well, the first sentence in the rules is - If the rules don’t explicitly say that a modification can be made then it can’t.


Engine: The engine is the 40HP air cooled horizontally opposed power plant. The best flowing heads are from the 1965 model year. The earlier heads do not flow as well and are not competitive. Rules allow the heads to be ported and polished as long as the valve diameters and port diameters remain stock. 1:1 ratio rockers are used. Crank is lightened to 11 lbs and optimized for the 1200 stroke. Flywheel is lightened to 12 lbs. Rods and pistons are lightened. Typical rings are Dykes for 1st and 2nd with stock oil scraper. Cam is optimized to stock1200 specification. Cam followers are lightened. A windage tray is used. Intake manifolds have the heat riser removed. The outside diameter is stock and the minimum weight is 17 oz. This is one trick part. I’ve heard of manifolds going for over $1,000. Carburetor is the PCI 28 from the 1959 Beetle. A paper thin venturi is used. Throttle plate is a minimum thickness and diameter. Throttle shaft is machined. A high performance carb goes for over $350.


Transmission: Stock Beetle swing axle unit has ring gear swapped to other side as engine/trans is reversed from standard Beetle configuration (engine in front on FVee). Later model case is used. I’ve not seen any of the earlier split case transmissions used, though using that allows some other gear ratios. Stock gear ratios are the only ones allowed. 1.22 third gear is the trick set-up. 0.89 fourth is used. I don’t know of anyone that runs the 0.82 since the power plant does not make enough horsepower to utilize this ratio. Two final drive ratios are popular 4.125 (Long Box) and 4.375 (Short Box). Due to the construction of the gearboxes, a complete transmission swap (along with chassis alignment) needs to be done for different track configurations. New Hampshire, Summit Point, Nelson Ledges, Mid Ohio, BeaveRun and Watkins Glen are short box tracks; Lime Rock and Pocono are Long Box tracks in the northeast.


Front suspension: One set of springs are removed from the beam and replaced with a solid sway bar. We run an 3/4 diameter one. A ride height adjuster is typically welded in the beam. Spindles are modified to use an offset bushing as the stock arrangement yields positive camber. Some model Vees (mine included – Protoform) cut off the steering connection to the spindle and a welded plate that reduced ackerman is used. This helps turn in characteristics. Front shocks using a special kit are mounted behind the upright reducing drag. The higher performance front shocks have an extension limit improving turn in on low speed turns.


Steering: Stock Steering box, no modifications. Steering arm is typically modified to utilize equal length tie rods.


Brakes / Wheels: Stock Drum brakes as fitted to 1965 Beetle are used. There are some aggressive shoe materials that are preferred. The ones I use are called “Mean Green”. The steel material is painted green. The pads must be made of "unobtainium" or "meraculum" as the cost is high……Wheels are standard 4J15.

DDC Racing · Bellville, Mi ·