Designed by Rory Byrne and Pat Symonds, and featuring a distinctive double rear wing, the Toleman TG184 is powered by a 1.5-litre Hart 415T straight four turbocharged engine coupled with a Hewland 5-speed manual gearbox. Chassis TG184-2 was gifted by Toleman to Grand Prix driver Stefan Johansson in 1985, apparently in lieu of salary and retained by the former Ferrari driver until 1994 when it was sold to the current owner. Although it is in excellent condition, it has not needed restoration and is, therefore, still completely original.
The Toleman TG184-2 was raced by triple World Champion Ayrton Senna during his first year of Formula 1 in 1984. This chassis (TG184-2) was piloted by Senna in the 1984 Monaco Grand Prix where the Brazilian driver announced himself on the world stage in spectacular fashion by finishing first on the road, but classified second to Alain Prost after the race was stopped on lap 32 due to torrential rain. Had the race continued, Senna would have scored Toleman's first ever victory in spectacular fashion.
This car provided the young Brazillan with the opportunity to showcase his immense talent on the highest stage. The story of the 1984 Monaco Grand Prix had everything, a young driver who would become the greatest of them all threading his way through the field, relentlessly hunting down the man who would soon become his arch rival. Human drama set against the glamour of Monte Carlo and the worst the heavens could throw at the Principality. Senna qualified 13th but, as he would demonstrate time and again throughout his illustrious career, he proved without equal in the treacherous conditions. By lap 19 he had passed Niki Lauda's McLaren for second and had Alain Prost in his sights. Such was the Brazilians superiority over the field that at one stage he was catching Prost by four seconds a lap. This was only Senna's sixth Formula One race but it left rivals with no doubt that the quiet young man from Brazil posed a real threat, just four years later he would take the first of his three World Championships.
As reigning British Formula 3 champion and Macau Grand Prix winner, Ayrton Senna was offered testing contracts by both Brabham and McLaren for 1984. However, being the fiercely competitive and self-confident individual that he was, he decided to take up the challenge of a race seat at Toleman, a gamble which was rewarded when he scored his first Formula 1 points in the second race of the season in South Africa in this chassis.
TG184-2 holds a unique place in the history. Seldom does an item or event encapsulate a career, or indeed a life, in the way that the Toleman TG184-2 and the 1984 Monaco Grand Prix do with Ayrton Senna. Choosing a race seat with Toleman rather than a test position with proven winners McLaren or Brabham was a gamble and not the last Senna would make in his career. Overtaking eleven cars in nineteen laps, on a street track where modern drivers will tell you overtaking is impossible, showed Senna's ruthless determination to succeed. As with all the great drivers Senna was a maestro in the wet, but to lap Monaco four seconds quicker than a driver of the calibre of Alain Prost is extraordinary. Not for the last time in his career, Ayrton Senna redefined what a man could do in a racing car. Finally, Monaco 1984 was the first chapter in what would become one of sports all time greatest human dramas, Senna v Prost.
Toleman was formed in 1977 to compete in the Formula Ford 2000 championship and made its Formula One debut in 1981 before the team was bought by Benetton at the end of the 1985 season. The DNA of the team can be traced to the current Lotus Formula One Team, through Benetton and Renault.