Red Bull RB8, 2012

Red Bull RB8 launch – first pictures and video of Red Bull’s 2012 F1 car

2012 F1 carsPosted on | Author Keith Collantine

The Red Bull RB8, the car the team aim to defend their championship titles with, was revealed today in Jerez.

Its predecessors the RB7 and RB6 won two constructors’ championships and took Sebastian Vettel to a pair of drivers’ titles. Red Bull will be hoping the RB8 can make it three in a row.

There is little change at the team which has been the dominant force in F1 for the last two-and-a-half years. Vettel and Mark Webber form the driving line-up, and Adrian Newey remains at the head of the technical team.

Red Bull RB8 pictures

Red Bull RB8 launch video

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Image ?? Red Bull/Getty images

205 comments on “Red Bull RB8 launch – first pictures and video of Red Bull’s 2012 F1 car”

  1. Just saw the video on the Red Bull Racing website………..quite cool…..hard to see though.

    1. I guess Red Bull Racing will never change that colour scheme?

      1. I think it works quite well, other than the stupid red endplates. At least they already have red in their livery though, unlike Lotus.

        1. I’ve always considered it too busy. I never cared for their livery much.

          1. I don’t think having to spread ‘Red Bull’ over so many front wing parts helps that impression at the front.

          2. I like it, the way it’s busy suits their brand image of being energetic and fun.

            Also, I like teams keeping the same brand identity. In years to come we will look back at the chrome cars and the blue ones with yellow noses in various F1 history books and clearly pick out the Mclaren and RedBull, in the same way we look at history books and know a white and red chevron is most likely a Mclaren, and the blue and yellow is a Williams from the 80s and 90s.

            Teams that are constantly changing their livery get lost in historic pictures, but those who don’t change build a strong image that sticks in the mind. RedBull are doing that, Mclaren and Ferrari are doing it and Force India are getting into it now with 3 years of Indian Flag livery.

          3. Calum: COTD.

          4. @Calum I agree on brand identity and teams building that over time. However, I don’t see it as busy in an energetic way. Rather, it comes across like the side of a car in NASCAR, instead. Text and logos attacking your eyes without leading them around in a way that incorporates good composition and the flow of the lines in the car. Energetic can do that without words and brands slapped on there like a bunch of stickers.

        2. I always liked the red endplates on the Renault/lotus whatever it is now.

      2. I think their livery is getting worse every year.

        1. yeah, their livery has too much going on!

    1. Quack Quack.

      1. Owen Wilson likes the RB8.

    2. F-ugly……

    3. I agree, my 10 plus years in software engineering tell me McLaren were the only ones that have it right. Seriously though, the McLaren look gorgeous, but again adrian made something horrible look fairly okay. I did expect the snow plow, and a smoother end for the red bull though.

      1. Because software engineering and aerodynamics have so much in common? :S

        1. Yes, that’s why Virgin won the last two Constructor’s Championships.

  2. Helmut Marko promised the car wouldn’t be as ugly as the Ferrari… He was right, allthough it seems the McLaren will take the beauty crown this year.

    1. Exhaust seems to be blowing towards the lower element of the rearwing. Front wing looks so complicated it blew my head off after 5 minutes.

      The intake in the front seems to be devided by the antenna… I wonder if the intake is split all the way through and possibly brings air to the back of the car through a channel system on each side.

      1. The front wing is similar to the RB7’s, it looks like they’ve added an element that is similar to the one that was on the MP4-26 in the second half of last season.

        1. I wondered about that, too. But they had that in Brazil already.

          (In case we’re both talking about the smaller case ‘r’ element)

          1. @GeeMac @dennis I think they tested those since Monza; and raced them first in Singapore? Suzuka?

          2. Well spotted @dennis and @raymondu999 , I didn’t even notice that RBR had that “r shaped element” at the end of last season.

      2. It looks like it is blowing either straight backwards or slightly downwards which is surely illegal? Ferraris also clearly blows downwards but towards the rear wheels…. Strange as the regs are so clear on this….. (Unless they are both just hiding their intentions)

        1. So far I can’t tell from the pictures if the exhaust is legal or not. I wondered about the Ferrari solution as well, and if they found a loophole.

          1. I was wondering if the Ferrari solution is to use the fairing to direct the exhaust downwards while underneath that it actually does point upwards. If so I can see that being banned very quickly….

    2. McLaren have admitted most of the parts including the exhaust were fake. We won’t see the beginnings of what it looks like until tomorrow.

      1. I don’t think they will change the layout of the nose, though as that would mean an entirely new chassis.

        I expect the exhaust position to change possibly several times through the season and the wings themselves were already outdated weeks before the presentation.

        1. Would it? The nose and front wing assemblies on all cars are designed for quick replacement during races.

          1. The actual nose can be changed but I believe the slope cannot too much (it’s part of the chassis), the nose mounts just after the slope.

          2. Exactly. It would make no sense to add a step in case of McLaren, as the chassis itself is so low.

    3. Adrian Newey have released a statement to Autosprint (it will be available the day after tomorrow) in which he said that he doesn’t like the shape of the nose but it’s a necessity

      1. Newey always said that he only builds ugly cars when they’re necessary.

        1. I think it’s a pity that the Red Bull livery is so grotesque.

        2. What does this mean for the McLaren? It seems like it is the only car w/o the drop in the nose

    4. He was indeed right, it’s uglier still…!

    5. Are McLaren the only ones with a non-ugly car ?

  3. Not bad for a step nose.

      1. Agreed. Why does it look a lot better than the other step noses?

        1. I think the reason is it’s a little tapered and has a lot more detail than others. Look Ferrari’s. It’s just a slope.

          1. the RB8 is just an adjustment of the RB7 (which won 12 gp) to the new regulation

        2. While there might be slight differences in the construction, I think a lot of it is livery and lighting used in the staging shots.

        3. Because it’s a vent. Probably for the Kers batteries. They had cooling problems with that last year.

        4. @bearforce1 Don’t know about what others think but maybe because the RB8’s retro,metallic colour scheme blends into the design/shape like the E20

        5. I think it’s the color. Seems like dark colors fits better with the nose. Sauber, Lotus, RBR ‘s noses look better than Ferrari, Caterham, Force India’s. Caterham is in a green but the leak photo we saw has very bright lighting.

    1. I agree, I think if you are able to get over the whole stepped nose thing, I think it looks quite good. I like that it looks like a tight sleek package.

    2. I’d say they have the second worst step-nose so far! Force India, Sauber and Lotus have the best looking step-noses.

      1. You seriously think the Sauber looks better…I didn’t think it was possible but that Sauber is AS UGLY as the Ferrari…

        1. In your opinion. :P

        2. Really? I thought the Sauber looked much better than the Ferrari. The black masks the edge

      2. @damonsmedley The Lotus one is my favourite, actually looks like a design feature than a design flaw.

        The RB8 I don’t think is too bad.

    3. The three coloured stripes line up with the front end of the nose, so that the step looks more natural.

  4. In the vid it looks like they have an intake where the nose goes up.

      1. Definitely a slot there… now, let the speculation begin ;)

        My money’s on a blown front wing.

        1. Don’t know about the blown front wing. I thought that the front wing is the first point of contact on a car anyways so would anyone really need more airflow on the front wing? Hard to say I guess.

          My guess would be the intake exits to the sides of the car floor, hence directing the airflow to the diffuser more efficiently.

          Maybe I’m just talking cr@p, but now I cannot wait to find out what it really does

          1. The system Merc tested used the hole in the front of the nose and blew out under the bottom of the front wing; it reduced drag at high speed (when you don’t need it, apart from in fast corners).

        2. That would be an awkwardly strange position for a BFW.

        3. I don’t see the slot. You can see the reflection of the antenna below it so there’s no slot there, and you can see the white of the sealant in a continuous line along the top of the recess and around the base of the antenna.

        4. I can’t possible see how it could blow the front wing. You would have to redirect the air back FORWARDS under the wing. How can an air intake behing the front wing itself, blow air over it…

        5. Funnily enough @BasCB and I were debating this last week after seeing the Caterham launch:

          It has to at least in part cool the driver, not sure what the regs say to be honest… anyone know?

    1. @Deurmat Pause the first video at 8:25 and you can see it quite clearly.

    2. If you’ve got a bump, might as well make use of it. Ferrari must already be worrying that they’ve missed a trick, McLaren wondering if they’ve called it right but probably more confident.

      1. could it be ferrari have something similar blowing onto the wings we saw in the “leaked” pics about a week ago?

      2. I think RB (Adrien) has found something nice, as usuall. Expect all cars later in the season to have an intake there.

    3. I guess it’s part of what the sidepods are supposed to do. If you have an air intake at the front, the sidepod intakes can be marginally smaller and thus the car becomes narrower/more compact. Anyway, that’s my thought.

    4. There is no slot, its just an effect generated by fading out the lines and the reflection on the paint to the overhang of the top surface. Its just a slight recess for aerodynamic reasons.

      1. I have to agree, pause the video at 0:45 and there doesn’t seem to be any slot you can see light reflecting of the body work where the slot would be!

        1. I paused it then and could see what plainly appears to me to be a slot.

          1. its hard to say, because it may well just be a shadow created by the overhang…..I suppose time will tell….

          2. That there is an overhang surely means there is a slot below it. A stepped nose is not very aerodynamic, but having an overhang that forms a hollow makes no sense at all, so it must be a slot.

      2. *off….or as you mentioned elsewhere it could be the sealant..

  5. there is an air inlet on the step nose !!! f-duct???

    1. yeh I thought that at first… although i think its just a cylindrical bulk, which may go some way to help reduce the turbulent air that the step creates….

    2. fly catcher maybe

    3. it can’t be of course.

      1. This.

        However I wonder if it might be something along the lines of Mercedes’ front wing. With a tunnel system channeling the air to a different place.

      2. Why not?

        Apparently the idea of a passive F-Duct is quite popular.

      3. I meant active one, sorry.

        1. The whole idea of the “F” duct, I believe originated with McLaren’s major sponsor at the time, Vodafone.

          The vent or duct happened to coincide with the position of the “f” in the Vodafone livery, hence the name f-duct.

          Is / was, this so and what are the latest 2012 regulations relating to the duct?

          1. @Sempai Unfortunately that’s a load of codswallop.. F-Ducts have been around (in principle, at least) for a while I’m led to believe…

  6. I just saw a close shot from the nose bulk. it looks rather interesting!

    Other than that, it’s just another Red Bull… by the looks of it, at least. I wonder what Newey put under it…!

    1. Yes. The livery is getting very tired (it’s very uninteresting in my opinion) and the red endplates make it look awful. Not as bad as the red Sky bargeboards we’ve seen in Brazil for the last few years, though.

      And I actually can’t notice much difference to last year’s car in terms of design! The nose is stepped (obviously), but what else has changed? Not much by the looks of it.

      1. @damonsmedley
        The question is what are they supposed to change. The exhaust position will determine how the sidepods eventually will look. But with the rear end being supposed to be as tiny as possible there’s little room for huge changes.

        The livery is alright, but nothing exciting. I agree that they might wanna try something new already, but rather this, then an actual Red Bull can design.

        1. I just think it would be nice if they repositioned everything. It needs redoing, and if they’re the team colours, they shouldn’t have to change them, but maybe make the bull a bit bigger and have him covering more of the car, and then adjust the positioning of the other patterns. It could do with updating in my opinion.

  7. why is mclaren’s nose odd looking?

  8. That’s ugly… But not as ugly as the Ferrari nose.

    Is it me or Webber’s helmet seems quite small on the picture ? Pretty low too…

    1. Lol its just a picture

  9. This isn’t a reveal… it’s a tease! How are we supposed to see anything in that, their nose solution is interesting… I can’t wait until testing to see these properly
    Do we know if there are any online video feeds from the testing this year?

  10. Intriguing nose/bulkhead opening.

  11. Wonder what Newey did with that step nose. This is new, nothing like what we have seen. Wonder what Mclaren is thinking right now, the odd one out or just very clever.

    1. Mr. Newey was thinking about optimising the flow towards the airbox, because the nose shape plays a significant role in feeding the air to the engine. Obviously he is trying to utilise the nose slope to achieve good flow further towards the engine air intake…

  12. At least it looks like the bump on the nose is functional. looks like there is a small slit. Best looking bump nose so far.

  13. Newey Flash!!! You are not copying me this year.

  14. Tom (@tomforpresident)
    6th February 2012, 13:21

    if it aint broke… punch it in the nose!

    1. lol funniest thing i’ve read in ages

  15. As always Newey has pushed the boundaries and has found an alternative way to make use of the step nose. Very interesting!

  16. On that inlet/duct/anything at the step of the nose:

    Thats just a new hole that Newey created.

    I cant belive it really, every so called innovation of Newey is a new hole in a car. A yesterday hole in the floor, now a hole in the nose. Last year at Abu Dhabi they raced another Newey design on Vettels car: a hole in the tyre.

    Apart from that I couldn’t see mutch, just flashy lights:D

  17. Reatarded heartbeat…

    1. Or maybe even retarded*

  18. Are these car makers ashamed of their products?
    Why are they filmed in the dark?
    Will they only race with the lights off.
    Did anyone else notice that the launch of the world champions car was not on ‘Sky Sports News?

    1. With those noses they probably are. Hmm..i guess that explains why Mclaren made a presentation and had nice lighting in the room. Nothing to be ashamed about.

  19. hard to tell from the video but I quite like it, definately the nicest out of the step noses

  20. Wow it looks great.I think they have again a very good car and with Vettel there will be very hard to beat.But first of all let’s see how they’ll do on testing sessions.

  21. Oh my, that is one tiny rear end! Tiny side pods too, that intake in the nose step an intake too? That’s a good way to make the side pods smaller if you can package it well enough.

    1. There’s also an outlet on top of the side pods. Potentially from the inlet on the nose step?

  22. I wouldn’t be surprise if the ferrari shows a similar solution when they will begin testing. their step nose looks very basic and wooden. the nose cone shown could have been just a dummy

    1. Possibly. It looks like blank canvas…

    2. I’m not sure how much can change in the steps because of the pre-test homologation.

      Of course, the shown car may not have been the homologated version, as you state.

  23. Wait, is this all? RB8 launched?

    1. seems like financial crisis really got to them! no budget for a fancy launch! not very deserving for last year champions!

  24. looks interesting.. startingto question mclarens ideas now, hoping theyve been really clever.. still we’ve only seen a ‘plastic’ mclaren so far…….

  25. I think Newey designed the nose-step to direct the high velocity air up and over the driver’s head, into the air intake and any remaining air into the rear wing (if not turbulent by that point). It also looks as if it can provide a few extra newtons of downforce to the front end as well. Remember, the RedBull team has the best fluid-dynamicists in F1. Every inch of the car is made the way it is for a good reason.

    1. I thought that too. Probably pushes air over the helmet. Would be interesting for the driver as they will feel less resistance than they’re used to.

    2. I’d echo on that mate, every bits of the car is there with a good reason. However, development is consisted of three steps. It works in aviation industry and it applies to f1 as well. First CFD than wind tunnel which is followed by testing in real conditions. The third is the most important. CFD gives you approximate results, wind tunnel as well but testing…, testing is a real thing.
      We won’t wait long, ’till tomorrow. Than, we’ll know.

    3. the nose-step itself has an air intake. thats the most interesting thing about it.

  26. I think Newey designed the nose-step to direct the high velocity air up and over the driver’s head, into the air intake and any remaining air into the rear wing (if not turbulent by that point). It also looks as if it can provide a few extra newtons of downforce to the front end as well. Remember, the RedBull team has the best fluid-dynamicists in F1. Every inch of the car is made the way it is for a good reason. :)

    1. I thought that too. Probably pushes air over the helmet. Would be interesting for the driver as they will feel less resistance than they’re used to. :)

      1. Haha, you definitely have sense of humor, @John H :)

  27. Well, RBR have taken the ugliest step nose award from Ferrari imo.

  28. It’s clearly an intake, which is allowed by the rules for “driver venilation.” But you can bet that’s not the only benefit Newey is going to get out of it.

    By the way, the teaser video dissolves the mystery of how they were going to launch the car at Milton Keyes Monday afternoon and test with it Tuesday morning in Jerez.

    1. @wdf2
      Normally the airintake for the driver is a very small pinhole in the front. That long hole in definitely way too big if it were only used to cool the driver.
      I don’t remember how Mercedes proposal for the front wing F-duct worked, but it could be something like that.
      Or simply just a way to redirect attention from some other genius piece that they will hide under the bodywork or simply wait to put on the car until we hit the first race of the season.
      Or just to keep the other teams busy working out that that intake does.
      Who knows, but it is definitely interesting.

      1. Well said! Always think outside the square!

      2. I was thinking along the same lines, that it might be a part of the front wing f-duct which is supposed to direct air through the front wing supports and into the wing itself, which was the way proposed by either Mclaren or Ferrari. The second use could be to direct air under the car feeding the airflow on the underside.

  29. Can we take bets on Vettel’s chassis name? I’m guessing Nosey Nellie.

    1. Depending on how much (Red Bull) coke she’s snorting in, her name can only be Courtney Love.

    2. With a nose like that, it can only be called Vera…

    3. Or Sarah Jessica Parker

    4. @lachie Alaina Prost?

  30. I would have thought red bull could afford some better lighting, not really a reveal more of an advert for the sponsors, no doubt they’ll be out with the blanket again this week in testing, hopefully they will use it to cover the front this year ha ha ha

  31. If anything, that has an even uglier nose than Ferrari… looks like the hood of one of those American muscle cars…

  32. Added a new video with lots more footage of the car.

    1. unfortunately it seems that there aint no footage from the waist down, are they trying to hide the exhaust (I couldnt see it) and the difuser which could have been shielded like in the Mclaren?

  33. Does this even count as a launch?! You can barely see the car. They should have just as well have rolled out the RB7…

  34. hmmm, so its IS your typical hook nose..oh marko

    1. It’s not your typical hook nose if it’s an *openning*. And it raises the very interesting question what Adrian is doing with that air. Check out @ScarbsF1 on twitter.

    1. Good find. As you can see from the first pic – there is no air intake under the stepped nose.

      1. I don’t think it shows at all clearly that it’s not an air intake. For one, if it isn’t an intake, it’s just a dead-end indentation — and even I know enough aerodynamics to tell you that’s not going to make the car faster.

      2. “The Red Bull RB8 has a large nose mounted duct. It is thought to feed air from the hump on the front of the chassis forward through the nose structure and down to the front wing. It is thought that this approach increases front downforce but little is known currently known about it.”

        It is an intake – see pics at

        1. Non of which are as clear as the first photo in the link posted by jobson. Also this is T3 which is far from official. In the first photo from jobson’s link there is no slot. You can see the shadow from the antenna go over the blue surface beyond the white border. If they replace it later with a slot then fine but this picture clearly shows there is no slot.

          1. Unless its a very slim slot that the angle of photo hides, in which case oops…

          2. I still think you guys are smoking the curtains. Is Racecar Engineering a more reliable source for you?
            Red Bull’s RB8 immediately caught the eye in the paddock with a large nose mounted duct. It is though to feed air from the hump on the front of the chassis forward through the nose structure and down to the front wing – similar to a system used on the Mercedes W02 in 2011. It is thought that this approach increases front downforce but little is known about it. Sauber is also thought to have a similar design for its new C31, openly admitting that they have ‘a lot of developments in this area’.
            The layout is legal as it is not driver operated so does not constitute a moveable aerodynamic device.

          3. Ok, so I’ll just say that the actual slot is not visible in the pictures. Everyone seemed to be making out that it was a massive duct. It needs to be a very slim slot hidden under the lip of the upper surface though.

        2. Supposedly Mclaren also has one inside the sidepods and so must all front runners have but this duct on the hump looks very smart.

  35. Newey likes classic cars, doesn’t he. Perhaps he’s been looking at the old Alfa GT Coupe…

    1. It’s clearly more like a RAM-Air intake… ;)

  36. I think it’s for cooling the KERS Batteries, Ferrari have double venting on the engine cover. KERS overy heating was a major problem for RBR last season and cost them race wins.

    1. This makes a lot of sense. can’t see how they could get any airflow from there to the rear wing or diffuser

      1. Unless they simply route it down through the nose and out underneath…

    2. Agree, most likely for KERS cooling which they had a problem with last year.
      Almost certainly NOT a blown front wing, the intake is far too far back

  37. better video @

  38. Is there sound to the video or is my old lap top dying ??

    1. no sound for me either!

  39. No one noticed that Red Bull isnt showing their exhaust or even anything at the rear of the car, in the video we see Newey and Horner looking at the rear but we cant see it, they shown us the new strange winglets and the slot at the bump and for sure radiators with secret chambers but we cant see the exhaust or the rear of the car. Last season Red Bull had a proper launch showing the car to the public and media but this year they only showed what they are confortable with which could possibly mean that the car has extreme concepts which will be target of protest by other teams, cheeky red bull no real innovations just textbook cheating.

    1. Um, how do get from “showing us what they’re comfortable with” to “textbook cheating”?
      First, try thinking all the way back to last week, when McLaren launched a car with something like a piece of plywood in lieu of a diffuser and Whitmarsh himself called “plastic” parts where the exhaust should be.
      Second, here are some better photos, illustrating among other things the right exhaust and heat shield.

        1. I agree, it sprung to my mind that Red Bull seem to a bit cagey of the rear end, I do not recall seeing any shot from directly behind the car. Not necessarily are they cheating but hiding either an innovation or a weakness maybe? I find the positioning of the exhaust exit interesting, quite low down compared to others? Underneath the suspension at a horizontal angle…

        2. WHen I said textbook cheating I was just saying that they seem to have done a great job with the new regulations, which is not surprising by the way thank for that photo still I cant see the exhaust?!

  40. The step and air income in the nose remembers me of predator

  41. Ben (@dirtyscarab)
    6th February 2012, 14:56

    In terms of the ‘stepped nose’ cars I think the RB8 is the best looking one so far (Closely followed by the Force India).

    As a Mclaren fan though I’m slightly worried that they’re the only ones (so far) that didn’t follow that philosophy. I assume it’s because they don’t want to travel too far away from what was a successful car last year and risk doing something to upset that.

    I just hope they get enough air-flow under the car.

    1. I am also a Mclaren fan, and share your concern. They seem to be the only team with a conventional nose section. As this will be a major deviation from the original concept to change to a step nose if their one proves to be the wrong direction. It could blow their season again like 09. I hope they have done their homework and their concept proves to be the best way, and it will be the other teams that have to catch up. But surely all the others including Newey cannot be wrong???

      1. McLaren is simply following last year’s design philosophy. They don’t have a stepped nose because the front of the bulkhead is already lower than the 55cm maximum height for the nose. See Scarborough’s typically excellent analysis at
        “This creates less space under the raised nose, but the teams snow plough device under the nose works aggressively as a turning vane, so perhaps the team don’t need the higher chassis to get the correct airflow to the sidepods leading edge. McLaren also find the lower nose provides the classic vehicle dynamics benefits of a low CofG and a less extreme front suspension geometry. This trade off works for McLaren and goes to prove not everything in F1 has to be a compromise in search of aero advantage.”

    2. McLarens design appears to be more ‘evolution’ rather than ‘revolution’ which seems sensible to me. The idea of Red Bull blowing air down to the front wing from that intake seems strange; the intake is behind the front wing isn’t it, so that would mean the air coming through the nose vent would crash into the air being moved over the front wing..??

      McLarens front wing looks like a 5-year old designed it; can’t believe that is the version they will be using during testing

    3. this is exactly what i was thinking when i saw RBR with an step nose!

      and as for front wing, according to Mclaren what was fitted on MP4-27 is last year’s wing…the new one will be fitted on testing (or maybe even Australia?)…it’s true about rear wing as well.

  42. The new Red Bull,is beutiful

    1. Come on out Christian, we know it’s you.

  43. I agree, it sprung to my mind that Red Bull seem to a bit cagey of the rear end, I do not recall seeing any shot from directly behind the car. Not necessarily are they cheating but hiding either an innovation or a weakness maybe? I find the positioning of the exhaust exit interesting, quite low down compared to others? Underneath the suspension at a horizontal angle.

    1. Interesting didn’t Scarbs say the Mclaren boys had gone for the lowest and most rear position allowed… but this is lower.

    2. I spotted that as well. At no point in the longer of the two videos did I see anything like a diffuser.

  44. Nice to see Total aren’t just crapping up Lotus’s livery this year, I suppose.

  45. Normal-looking Red Bull, if it weren’t for the nose (which at least has an innovative inlet) and the “Total” logos on the wings which add useless red to the car.

  46. Maybe instead of having a passive F-duct or stalling device, he’s using the (probable) slot in the nose to feed air through the car and into the diffuser so in high speed corners its still getting a boost and sticking to the track better. As far as i understand, with Mercedes using the hole in the nose to channel air to stall the front wing, this should still be legal shouldn’t it?

  47. Vettel will name the RB8 ugly betty.

    1. just saw you beat me to it! +1

  48. To anyone that think that slot is used for a front blown wing, how is the air going to travel back on itself over a foot to get to the front wing?

    Its most likely for KERS cooling or to the floor and diffuser for extra rear DF

    1. Why shouldn’t it travel backwards?
      A Tuba works with only the force of your lungs, and that blows air forwards and backwards a number of times.
      I don’t think you should underestimate the force of air at over 200mph.

    2. Glad you asked! Here is Scarborough’s great analysis of the (alleged) Mercedes blown front wing in 2011. (I link to the update blog, as this links back to the very detailed original post.) I won’t try to summarize all of his analysis. In short, it is unproblematic to blow air from the nose hole (Mercedes, or step nose slot in the case of Red Bull) and direct it out from small holes along the leading edge of the wing. One possible benefit: At high speeds (so called End Of Straight or EOS conditions) the front wing is “blown” and loses downforce, which has the effect of raising the front and means the car can run an overall lower front ride height.

      1. Yes, you can easily lead the air forward but if you don’t wan’t the same air pressure at the exit hole you need that hole to point backwards – hence fold the airflow twice. Once at 180° and again at at least 90°. Every fold creates resistance and you need to place these 270° fold within a very confined space. I doubt that’s the case.

      2. Yes I’ve read that piece, but their inlet is at the tip of the nose.

        1. True that leading air forward (in a closed environment with the exits pointing leeward) is unproblematic. But you might be right about the challenges of “folding” the air in such a short/confined space. However, given Newey’s obsession with the front wing ride height, I wouldn’t be surprised. If not, KERS cooling is equally useful.

    3. Exactly right – there is no way to lead dead air forward unlike the high pressure exhaust air. I don’t think it goes to the diffuser either as it would be forced downward – hence causing a lift on the way.

      Then the final three options are cooling or rear wing but it doesn’t look there is a possible path toward the rear wing that wouldn’t create another lift and the volume of air would be pretty insignificant anyway.

      So cooling it is – unless it’s really cannon hole !!! :-)

      1. KERS cooling is my guess as well as that is where their 2011 problem was.

  49. I dont know if this has already been mentioned but could somebody enlighten me on what the vent is at the point of the step-up nose meets the bulkhead?

    1. Well, when a step-nose like Prost met a bulk-head like Senna there was always a lot of venting going on!

  50. I wonder what Vettel will name this one? I suggest “Ugly Betty” ;)

    2008- “Julie”
    2009- “Kate” and then “Kate’s Dirty Sister”
    2010- “Luscious Liz” and “Randy Mandy”
    2011 – “Kinky Kylie”

    1. As he’s German it has to be “Ugly Uschi”.

  51. Another broken nose??? What is this?,almost all the cars except McLaren have broken noses this year?

  52. Red Bull Are only in the Sport to get that RedBull logo out there. they aint gunna change there livery. Im sick of seeing the Bulls Everywhere.

    1. He says with an avatar that exist of 50% vodafone logo, 2% Hamilton helmet, 10 of grey car and 38% of background.

      1. Well said, sir! @f1fannl

  53. From what i can see of it, and what i’ve read/heard, that slot would run all the way through to the diffuser as a “replacement” for the blown systems they use to run last year.

    With the basic principal of the diffuser being the heated air, it wouldn’t be difficult to run the intake through a valve/tube or area near to the engine, gearbox etc creating some substantial heat and in part giving a hot blown diffuser solution.

    Just IMO

  54. I’m very interested in that nose. @keithcollantine are there any better, or even real pics around of that nose?

    People are saying it’s a vent/slot/hole but I’m not convinced. I’m wondering actually – could they be potentially playing on hollow point aerodynamics?

    1. Exactly what I’ve been thinking. There are some clearer shots but I think they were taken from the video:

      Watching the video too, there is clearly no visible slot. If there is one it is very slim and out of sight.

  55. I must be the only one/one of few people who like the nose. Not per se from a design perspective, but for shear character and something so unusual and weird that it’s nice.

    But please, someone explain to me. Why did teams with the hump chose for such a radial drop to the nose? McLaren just has a lower overal chassis I understand. But with the teams having the high cockpit, low nose, what would prevent any team from using a longer, large(r) radius slope to give a smooth look. I mean, the rules apply to the tip of the nose right, not that the first 50/75cm have to be flat? (McLaren wouldn’t pass regulations then…). Otherwise I couldn’t think of all teams (except McLaren) with all independently designing a more or less identical “hard” drop from cockpit to nose.

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