Red Bull Racing took the covers off its car for the 2018 FIA Formula 1 World Championship season earlier on Monday. Dubbed the RB14, the chassis kicks off a new era for Red Bull as Aston Martin joins the team as a title sponsor, giving them the official name of Aston Martin Red Bull Racing, with Aston Martin branding featured prominently on the chassis, notably on the side of the cockpit and across the rear wing.
The announcement also featured a special blue and black livery on the car. However, the livery will reportedly be temporary, as the race livery will be revealed during testing at the Circuit de Catalunya when testing begins next week.
“Daniel Ricciardo is taking the all-new Aston Martin-Red Bull Racing-TAG Heuer RB14 for a spin at Silverstone as we conduct a pre-season filming day,” the team revealed in an announcement on their website.
The announcement continued, “The RB14 is currently wearing a special edition livery. We’re keeping our race-ready paint job under wraps for the time being and will unveil it at the Circuit de Catalunya next week. The unfamiliar shapes under the paint, however, are here to stay.”
Recent years have seen the Red Bull squad launch their car relatively late, right before pre-season testing even, as a way of maximizing design and development ahead of the season. However, they used a different philosophy this year.
“The pattern of the last few years has been to launch ‘aggressively late’. This has allowed the design department the maximum amount of time to add goodness to the car before the cut-off point at which the design is frozen and a launch car produced. It’s been not uncommon to have the car finished, fired up for the first time and shipped to Spain for the start of testing all on the same day,” the team explained.
They continued, “It serves a purpose – but you wouldn’t do it if you didn’t have to, and this year we didn’t have to. It’s preferable to finish the car early and deal with any snags now, when the car is on a track a short drive from the factory, rather than using up one of our eight ultra-precious test days doing the same at the Circuit de Catalunya.”
Testing begins at the Catalunya circuit begins on February 26.