The PC-9 was designed by British designer Geoff Ferris at Penske Racing. The car was powered by Cosworth V8 engine and raced by works Team Penske in 1980 and 1981 CART seasons, and until 1983 by other entrants. The car also won 1981 Indianapolis 500, which was officially part of the 1981–82 USAC season, being driven by Bobby Unser. In the 1980 CART championship Team Penske entered two cars for full time schedule, driven by veteran Bobby Unser and Rick Mears. Unser, 46, was in his 20th season in USAC / CART, while for Mears, 28, it was his 5th season in US top open wheel racing series. Unser driving Team Penske Norton Spirit sponsored car won four races of the season – at Milwaukee, Pocono, Watkins Glen and Ontario, and finished the championship runner-up to Johnny Rutherford in works Chaparral 2K. Mears raced with Gould Charge sponsorship, won the race at Mexico City and was classified fourth in the final season points standings.
In addition to two regular cars, Team Penske also entered third car for Mario Andretti in four events when Mario was free from his Formula One duties with Lotus. Mario retired at Indianapolis and Pocono in Essex-sponsored PC-9, won the race at Michigan and was second in Phoenix, both times with AB Dick / Pacemaker sponsorship.
Ertl issued the series of 1/43 PC-9 models in 1980, representing cars driven by Andretti, Unser, Mears, and Bill Alsup of Alsup Racing.
|1980||CART / USAC National Championship|
|Rick Mears||1||Penske Racing|
|Penske PC9||Cosworth||Gould Charge|