24 Hours of Le Mans: The Winners

The 24 Hours of le Mans

The 24 Hours of Le Mans is the world's oldest active sports car race in endurance racing, held annually since 1923 near the town of Le Mans. It is considered one of the most prestigious automobile races in the world and has been called the "Grand Prix of Endurance and Efficiency". Unlike fixed-distance races whose winner is determined by minimum time, the 24 Hours of Le Mans is won by the car that covers the greatest distance in 24 hours. Racing teams must balance the demands of speed with the cars' ability to run for 24 hours without mechanical failure.

The race is held on the Circuit de la Sarthe, which is composed of closed public roads and dedicated sections of racing track.

Launched when Grand Prix motor racing was the dominant form of motorsport throughout Europe, Le Mans was designed to present a different test. Instead of focusing on the ability of a car company to build the fastest machines, the 24 Hours of Le Mans would concentrate on the ability of manufacturers to build sporty yet reliable cars. This encouraged innovation in producing reliable and fuel-efficient vehicles, because endurance racing requires cars that last and spend as little time in the pits as possible.

At the same time, the layout of the track necessitated cars with better aerodynamics and stability at high speeds. While this was shared with Grand Prix racing, few tracks in Europe had straights of a length comparable to the Mulsanne. Additionally, because the road is public and thus not as meticulously maintained as permanent racing circuits, racing puts more strain on the parts, increasing the importance of reliability.

The race is held in June, leading at times to very hot conditions for drivers, particularly in closed vehicles with poor ventilation; rain is commonly seen. The race begins in mid-afternoon and finishes the following day at the same hour the race started the previous day.

Thanks to Wikipedia for the introduction above.

Below you will see pictures of models of the winning cars from those years where Little Wheels has managed to buy and sell an example. Click on the car to find out a little more about that year's race and see if we have been able to find more of the cars from that year.


Year Car No Team Drivers Chassis Engine Laps
1923 IXO LM1923; Chenard Walcker; 1923 24h Le Mans 1st; Lagache & Leonard; RN9 9

Chenard-Walcker SA

André Lagache
René Léonard

Chenard-Walcker Type U3 15CV Sport

Chenard-Walcker 3.0L S4

1924 1924 Bentley 3 Litre 8

Bentley Motors Limited

John Duff
Frank Clement

Bentley 3 Litre Sport

Bentley 3.0L S4

1925 Lorraine-Dietrich B3-6 5

Societe Lorraine De Dietrich et Cie

André Rossignol
Gérard de Courcelles

Lorraine-Dietrich B3-6 Sport

Lorraine-Dietrich 3.5L S6

1926 Lorraine Dietrich B3-6 6 (2nd)

Société Lorraine De Dietrich et Cie

André Rossignol
Robert Bloch

Lorraine-Dietrich B3-6 Le Mans

Lorraine-Dietrich 3.4L S6

1927 Bentley 3 Litre 3

Bentley Motors Limited

Dudley Benjafield
Sammy Davis

Bentley 3 Litre Speed

Bentley 3.0 S4

1928 Bentley 4.5 Litre 4

Bentley Motors Limited

Woolf Barnato
Bernard Rubin

Bentley 4½ Litre

Bentley 4.4L S4

1929 Bentley Speed Six 1

Bentley Motors Limited

Woolf Barnato
Sir Henry “Tim” Birkin

Bentley Speed Six

Bentley 6.6L S6

1930 Bentley Speed Six 4

Bentley Motors Limited

Woolf Barnato
Glen Kidston

Bentley Speed Six

Bentley 6.6L S6

1931 1931 Alfa Romeo 8c 16

Earl Howe
(private entrant)

Francis Curzon, Earl Howe
Sir Henry Birkin

Alfa Romeo 8C-2300 LM

Alfa Romeo 2.3L S8

1932 1931 Alfa Romeo 8c 8

R. Sommer
(private entrant)

Raymond Sommer
Luigi Chinetti

Alfa Romeo 8C-2300 MM

Alfa Romeo 2.34L S8

1933 1931 Alfa Romeo 8c 11

R. Sommer
(private entrant)

Raymond Sommer
Tazio Nuvolari

Alfa Romeo 8C-2300 MM-LM

Alfa Romeo 2.34L S8

1934 Riley Ulster Imp 37


Riley Motor Company Ltd.

Sammy Newsome
Percy Maclure

Riley Nine Ulster Imp

Riley 1.1L I4

1935 Lagonda Rapide 4

Arthur W. Fox & Charles Nicholl

Johnny Hindmarsh
Luis Fontés

Lagonda M45R Rapide

Meadows 4.5L I6

1936 Cancelled due to industrial action            
1937 1936 Bugatti Type 57G Tank 2

Roger Labric 

Jean-Pierre Wimille
Robert Benoist

Bugatti Type 57G Tank

Bugatti 3.3L I8

1938 Alfa Romeo 8C 19 (DNF)

Raymond Sommer

Raymond Sommer
Clemente Biondetti

Alfa Romeo 8C 2900B Touring

Alfa Romeo 2.9L Supercharged I8

1939 Lagonda V12 5

 Lagonda Ltd.

Arthur Dobson
Charles Brackenbury

Lagonda V12

Lagonda 4.5L V12

  The race was suspended from 1940 to 1948 because of the Second World War and it's aftermath, recommencing in 1949            
1949 1948 Ferrari 166 MM 22

Peter Mitchell-Thomson, Lord Selsdon
(private entrant)

Luigi Chinetti
Peter Mitchell-Thomson, Lord Selsdon

Ferrari 166 MM

Ferrari 2.0L V12

1950 1950 Talbot Lago T26 GS 5

Louis Rosier

Louis Rosier
Jean-Louis Rosier

Talbot-Lago T26 GS Biplace

Talbot-Lago 4.5L S6

1951 Jaguar C Type 20

Jaguar Cars Ltd

Peter Walker
Peter Whitehead

Jaguar XK-120C

Jaguar 3.4L S6

1952 Mercedes-Benz 300SL 21

Daimler-Benz A.G.

Hermann Lang
Fritz Riess

Mercedes-Benz W194

Mercedes-Benz 3.0L S6

1953 1951 Jaguar C Type 18

.Jaguar Cars Ltd

Tony Rolt
Duncan Hamilton

Jaguar C-Type

Jaguar 3.4L S6

1954 Jaguar D Type 4

Scuderia Ferrari

José Froilán González
Maurice Trintignant

Ferrari 375 Plus

Ferrari 5.0L V12

1955 Jaguar D Type 6

 Jaguar Cars Ltd.

 Mike Hawthorn
 Ivor Bueb

Jaguar D-Type

Jaguar 3.4L S6

1956 Jaguar D Type


 Ecurie Ecosse

 Ninian Sanderson
 Ron Flockhart

Jaguar D-Type

Jaguar 3.4L S6


1957 Jaguar D Type 3

 Ecurie Ecosse

 Ron Flockhart
 Ivor Bueb

Jaguar D-Type

Jaguar 3.4L S6


1958 Ferrari 250 Testa Rossa


 Scuderia Ferrari

 Olivier Gendebien
 Phil Hill

Ferrari 250 TR/58

Ferrari 3.0L V12


1959 Aston Martin DBR1


 David Brown Racing Dept

 Roy Salvadori
 Carroll Shelby

Aston Martin DBR1/300

Aston Martin 3.0L S6




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Last Edit: 25/09/2020 Page Added 14/07/2020