Kojima Engineering was a Japanese Formula One constructor who entered cars in the Japanese Grand Prix in 1976 and 1977.
The team was founded in 1976 by Matsuhisa Kojima. Kojima had made a fortune importing bananas, and was a motor-racing enthusiast, having ridden in Motocross himself in the 1960s. He began entering Formula Two cars in Japan, and struck a deal with Dunlop to supply tyres for the 1976 Japanese Grand Prix. To go with these, the company constructed the KE007 chassis, and brought in several staff-members from the Maki team. They helped arrange an entry for the Grand Prix at Fuji, and a Cosworth DFV engine.
The car was tested throughout the Autumn of 1976, with Masahiro Hasemi, a Japanese Formula 2 driver, at the wheel. Hasemi then scored a huge stir at the Japanese Grand Prix, posting 4th best time in the first qualifying session. However, he crashed in the second session, and the car had to be rebuilt virtually from scratch. Hasemi started 10th, and ran superbly before tyre trouble led to an eventual 11th place. He was initially credited with fastest lap, but this was a measurement mistake, and, several days later, the circuit issued a press release to correct the fastest lap holder of the race to Jacques Laffite.
A planned entry into the 1977 South American races didn't emerge, but the team built a new Kojima KE009 for the 1977 Japanese Grand Prix. Bridgestone this time supplied the tyres, but these were unsatisfactory, and Noritake Takahara started only 19th before crashing avoiding debris. A second KE009 was entered by Heros Racing for the same race, Kazuyoshi Hoshino starting and finishing 11th.
Activity: 1976 - 1977 Grand Prix: 2 Best Result: 11th - M. Hasemi (Japan 1976) / K. Hoshino (Japan 1977) Best Grid Position: 10th - M. Hasemi (Japan 1976) Fastest Laps: 0 Championship Points: 0