Here is my personal take on the 1966 season.
We are focusing on the later season cars so the Lotus 33 and
the BRM 261 do not figure in our calculations of how the
season went for each team.
Historically the Brabham won the World Championship of 1966.
The BT19 was not the fastest car but handled well and was
reliable. It mostly won on tracks where handling was at a
premium and did not score too well at power circuits. The
exception to this was Reims where Black Jack took the win from
the inexperienced Parks who was in his first GP. Brabham also won the British GP ( Brands ), Dutch ( Zandvoort
), German ( Nurburgring ) and came second in Mexico.
The Ferrari was probably the best car of 1966. If Surtees had stayed
with Ferrari the World Championship could have been different.
Surtees/Ferrari won at Spa, Parks and Scarfotti wiped the floor with
the opposition at Monza. Bandini led at Monaco but reliability issues
meant he finished 2nd.
The Lotus43 even the hands of Clark was not a contender due to
its over weight engine and unreliability. Its weight became
apparent as soon as it was delivered to Lotus and it took four
strong men to lift it from the back of the truck. But the incredible Clark did manage to win the USA GP at
Watkins Glen. The BRM H16 engine was very powerful but lacked
low end torque. The Lotus 43 chassis was not bad but
compromised by the engine.
BRM's factory team faired worst than Lotus with the H16 for the same
reasons. Although the car was powerful, the bus engine in the back
meant power to weight was not amongst the top runners. Stewart won at
Monaco but not with the P83 H16 which was not ready for Monaco.
Cooper benefited by Surtees joining them after his Ferrari
debacle and by the end of the season the car was competitive.
Surtees thought the Cooper handled well although a touch on
the heavy side. The Maserati engine although long in the tooth
produced plenty of usable power. Surtees/Cooper came second at Nurbugring and went on to win
the Mexican GP.
Honda were late into the game with their 3lt V12. The car was
noted for its tremendous acceleration but generally faded as
the race went on, possibly due to it eating up its tyres. The
273 was also a bit on the heavy side. Ginther was a steady driver but maybe not in the same league
as Clark and Surtees so this also influenced the car's
results. Ginther shot into the lead of the Mexican GP but faded to
Gurney's Eagle had to make do with the 2.7 litre 4 cylinder
Climax engine as his V12 Weslake designed engine was not
ready. It did make an appearance at Monza but reliability
issues meant Gurney still favouring the Climax engine for the
last few races of 66. With the light weight Climax engine the Eagle chassis handled
well and despite giving away many hp Gurney was able to
qualify well at the twisty circuits as well as scoring two 5th
places at Spa and Mexico.