Formula One is technologically spectacular. The worlds greatest designers and engineers come together to craft a machine that is made of the most cutting-edge materials. End result is one of the fastest land based objects on earth as nothing short of a fighter jet can change direction at the speed that an F1 car does. Some F1 teams have translated their technologies into their own road cars. Ferrari have been doing it for decades and McLaren have made such a success of selling production vehicles that a profit has been made in just 3 years! We began to ponder… Are Red Bull building a road car?
Ok, a question like that is quite a leap from where we are today, even with a team as successful as Red Bull Racing. Here is how we think this jigsaw will come together at some point in the future. Team principle Christian Horner has openly expressed an interest in his Milton Keynes based team producing something for the road to expand the technology side of the business. Here we have a motive. With experience in building carbon fibre monocoques and producing some damn fast cars in the process, this makes Red Bull very capable of manufacturing a road car in limited numbers. Their ties with Infiniti/Nissan and Renault would give them access to a wealthy parts bin also. We now have a means.
Now factor in the catalyst of Adrian Newey. The genius designer is taking a step back from the world of Formula One to focus on other aspects of Red Bull technology. Red Bull have not specifically said what Newey will be working on, but in the past he has designed cars for the Playstation game Gran Turismo. His latest creation, the X2014 pictured, imagines a racing car that isn’t constrained by the rule book. In reality this car has so much downforce that its cornering speeds would kill its driver. Although road cars still have to meet specific requirements, Newey could be freed to design something that would further promote Red Bull as so much more than an energy drinks company.
There is a business case for a car that, just like McLaren did with Gordon Murray and the F1, allows a top Formula One designer to create a unique road car. It would no doubt be performance orientated and sold in small numbers at a huge cost, but what a car it would be.