F1 2018 cars: New F1 cars for 2018’s World Championship from Mercedes, Toro Rosso, Williams, Red Bull, and more
Over the last week or so, we’ve seen F1 teams start to reveal their new cars for the forthcoming season, which officially starts at the Melbourne Grand Prix on 25 March. So far, we’ve seen vehicles unveiled by Haas, Williams, Red Bull, Sauber and Renault. You can see details of all the new cars on this page, and we’ll keep the list updated as other teams – including Mercedes, McLaren and Ferrari – reveal their new vehicles.
F1 2018 cars
Force India VJM11
Today, Force India unveiled its new car, the VJM 11 ahead of testing at Barcelona’s Circuit de Catalunya. The car will be driven by Sergio Perez and Esteban Ocon, who were both on hand at the unveiling. However, it was test driver Nikita Mazepin who took the car for its first few laps of the Barcelona track.
“The DNA of the car is still very much that of last year’s car,” said technical director Andrew Green. We took the decision, quite a while ago, that the launch specification of the 2018 car would be based around our understanding of the 2017 car, but with all new structures required by the regulations in place. It is a starting point, a good reference from which to introduce changes quite quickly; it gives our aerodynamics department more time to develop a car for the first race in Australia, rather than having to release parts early for testing.”
Torro Rosso STR13
Photos of Torro Rosso’s STR13 were leaked last week, prompting the team to share its own photo of the car on Thursday. However, it was only today that the new car was unveiled for real ahead of testing on Barcelona’s Circuit de Catalunya. Although the car had notched up 50 laps by lunchtime with Brendon Hartley behind the wheel, the team has yet to publish many details about the new car, so we’ll update this page as soon as we find out more.
At first glance, the MCL33 looks significantly different from its predecessor, the MCL32. For starters, it has a brand new livery that uses the “papaya” orange and blue colour scheme first adopted by McLaren more than fifty years ago. The MCL33 is also the first McLaren car powered by a Renault engine, after the manufacturer split from Honda at the end of last season. As such, much of the work on the MCL33 has gone into packaging this new engine as well as incorporating the new halo device. The car will be driven by Fernando Alonso and Belgium’s Stoffel Vandoorne and testing begins next Monday at the Circuit de Catalunya in Barcelona.
Scuderia Ferrari SF71H
The 64th car Ferrari has built for the World Championships, the SF71H has slightly different wheelbase to its predecessor and wider tyres. The most obvious change, however, is the Halo, which weighs about 7KG – to account for this new requirement, the minimum car weight regulation has increased by 5 Kg, from 728KG to 733KG.
After its launch today, the SF71H is being transported to the Catalunya Circuit in Barcelona for a filming day on Sunday 25th. Testing begins the following Monday, where the car will be driven by both Ferrari drivers, Kimi Raikkonen and Sebastian Vettel.
Mercedes-AMG F1 W09 EQ Power+
At its grand unveiling, Mercedes team boss Toto Wolff, alongside drivers Lewis Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas, finally took the covers of the 2018 Mercedes-AMG F1 W09 EQ Power+. Describing it as the “most advanced machine ever conceived by Mercedes”, the F1 W09 EQ Power+ is expected to beat last year’s Formula One lap records. If successful, it would make the F1 W09 EQ Power+ the fastest Mercedes F1 car ever made. With the W09, Mercedes will be hoping for a record-equalling fifth consecutive world title double.
It uses last year’s ‘EQ Power+’ designation, designed to represent the brand’s future performance hybrid models, and includes its own take on the now-mandatory ‘halo’, designed to protect drivers in the cockpit. However, not everyone is enamoured with the halo. Wolff told reporters: “If you give me a chainsaw I would take it off,” before adding: “We need to look after the driver safety but what we have implemented is aesthetically not appealing. It is a massive weight on the car and you screw up the centre of gravity.”
Haas F1 VF-18
American team Haas was the first to reveal its new car for the 2018 season on 14 February. The VF-18 is an evolution of the team’s second car, the VF-17, which achieved an eighth-place finish in the 2017 constructors standings, ahead of Mclaren Honda and Sauber Ferrari. “The livery is a little bit of a return to what we had on our first car, the VF-16,” said the team’s principal, Guenther Steiner, commenting on the car’s red and white scheme.[gallery:8]
Williams Martini Racing FW 41
Williams Martini Racing revealed its new car for 2018, the Williams Mercedes FW41, in London on 15 February. The car is a significant departure from its predecessor, the FW40, thanks to input from the team’s recently appointed Chief Technical Officer, Paddy Lowe, and Head of Aerodynamics, Dirk de Beer.
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Aston Martin Red Bull Racing RB14
Aston Martin Red Bull Racing’s new RB14 was unveiled on Monday when Daniel Ricciardo took it for a spin in wet conditions at Silverstone. The car’s livery, which has been nicknamed ‘disruption’ is a limited edition scheme, but some fans have already called for the team to keep it all season.
Alfa Romeo Sauber F1 C32
After announcing a new technical and commercial partnership contract with Alfa Romeo in November, Sauber’s team has been renamed Alfa Romeo Sauber F1 Team. The Alfa Romeo name brings with it heaps of history and its return to F1 also marks the return of the “Quadrifoglio”, the badge that has appeared on Alfa Romeo’s top performance cars since 1923. Commenting on the team’s new car, technical director Jörg Zander said “The aerodynamic concept has changed significantly, and the C37 has several new features.”[gallery:7]
Renault Sport F1 R.S. 18
The R.S.18 is Renault’s third chassis since its return to Formula 1 in 2016 and its features improved suspension and greater aerodynamic downforce compared to the R.S.17. Like all the cars in this list, the R.S.18 also includes the now-mandatory cockpit protection known as the ‘halo’ and a redesigned engine cover to comply with 2018 technical regulations. Nico Hülkenberg and Carlos Sainz will again be behind the wheel of Renault’s new cars, with 22-year-old Jack Aitken taking the reserve driver role.[gallery:2]