2012 F1 driver helmets in pictures

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The class of 2012 have revealed their helmet designs for the year ahead.

Here are pictures of the helmet designs being used by the F1 drivers of 2012:

Sebastian Vettel

If you like Sebastian Vettel’s latest helmet design it’s probably best not to get too attached to it. He changes them as often as he changes his socks.

Mark Webber

Like several of the other drivers, Mark Webber’s helmet design is little-changed from the one he used last year.

Jenson Button

Lewis Hamilton

Fernando Alonso

Felipe Massa

Michael Schumacher

Nico Rosberg

Rosberg has eased back on the grey in favour of a more striking yellow design for his 2012 crash helmet.

Kimi Raikkonen

A striking black-and-white design for F1 returnee Kimi Raikkonen.

Romain Grosjean

Another new face on the grid is Romain Grosjean, who sports a helmet design that complements Lotus’s black and gold.

Paul di Resta

Di Resta has removed the Italian flag tricolour from the helmet design he used at the start of last season.

Nico Hulkenberg

Kamui Kobayashi

Sergio Perez

Perez has swapped orange and green for yellow and white in his 2012 lid, with a prominent Mexican flag on the top.

Daniel Ricciardo

Jean-Eric Vergne

Pastor Maldonado

Maldonado has swapped the white portions of his 2011 helmet for sparkling silver.

Bruno Senna

The Satander logos are a late addition to Senna’s helmet, which of course is modelled on that of his uncle Ayrton Senna.

Heikki Kovalainen

Vitaly Petrov

Narain Karthikeyan

Pedro de la Rosa

Timo Glock

A more colourful design for Glock in 2012, trading black for blue in places.

Charles Pic

Reserve drivers

Here are the helmet designs being used by some of the reserve drivers this year:

The pictures above will take you into the main gallery, where you can see more angles of many of the helmets.

Here are last year’s helmet designs for comparison.

Which is your favourite of the 2012 drivers’ helmet designs? Have your say in the comments.

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Keith Collantine
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115 comments on “2012 F1 driver helmets in pictures”

  1. Massa and Kobayashi have the coolest helmets in my opinion.

    I love what Webber’s done to the blue of his helmet! Looks much more interesting. I also love Sebastian Vettel’s ‘fingerprint-style’ pattern on the top of his helmet, but I don’t think that shade of blue goes well with the rest of the helmet.

    My least favourites are Perez’s and Raikkonen’s. Why did Sergio change his design? It looked quite distinctive last year, now it looks kind of sickly…

    1. Has anyone come accross Kovalainen’s “Angry Birds” helmet? I think its the coolest. Am not sure whether he will run with it though.

  2. That Dani Clos helmet is certainly different.

    For the third year in a row it’s Alonso with the best helmet again.

    1. True, of the race drivers Alonso has the best livery for me though I also like Narain Karthikeyan’s livery, particulalry the wheel of the Indian flag on top.

      Overall, I like Esteban Gutierrez’s helmet the most.

    2. 1. Alonso
      2. Button
      3. Heiki
      4. Lewis
      5. Kamui

      1. i loved fernando’s one he used in 08.

        i wish michael would go back to the pre 2000 colours. would suit the mercedes much better than the red.

        1. Yep, Schumi should either switch back to one of his old designs (like this one ) or even use the awesome golden one from Spa last year. In conjunction with his silver arrow it looked killer!

          (Despite it was sometimes hard to distinguish between Michael’s golden helmet and Nico’s yellow one.)

          IMHO the Iceman’s helmet looks the best. Followed by the classic designs of Alonso and Hamilton. I like the unconventional approach regarding color and motif of Dani Clos’ helmet, too.

  3. I’m not entirely sure what the point in having Vettel’s helmet there is, since he’ll have 51 others before the season finishes! Other than that, they’re looking good. Especially Kobayashi and Grosjean IMO

    1. lol
      Vettel’s helmet should come with a disclaimer… “Subject to change.”

    2. It’s not just the fact that he keeps changing the design, but why can’t he keep it simple. Maybe that’s what you should expect from a youngster who has grown on video games.

      What a far cry from the days of Senna, Piquet, Prost, Patrese, Mansell et al! They had distinctive designs that were simple but stood the test of time. But now I think these young drivers have their minds crammed with so much stuff that they want to let it all out on their helmet. Vettel is the biggest culprit here.

  4. Kovalainen’s, Webber’s, Kobayashi’s, and a bit behind Kimi’s, are the coolest for me! Some are quite hideous tho :P!

  5. What are the odds of Vettel’s design not lasting past Practice 1?

    1. He uses a helmet and then ‘retires’ it once he wins with it.

      1. @TommyB89 Really? Has he been doing that since he entered F1?

        1. Yep. For example in 2009 he had a helmet for Singapore but didn’t win. He used it again in Abu Dhabi and won with it, therefore it won’t get used again.

          1. Interesting, never heard of that before. I prefer it when drivers keep the same helmet design for the whole career, but that’s actually a nice and fun thing he’s doing. I just hope, for the sake of the championship, he doesn’t use too many different ones this year!

          2. @TommyB89 Actually, wouldn’t that mean his helmet would be the same for the third race in a row, as he hasn’t won since India?

          3. @enigma he’s never said he won’t change it anyhow if he doesn’t win a race, only that if he does win a race he definitely won’t use that design again. So he could very well change it between every session this year!

          4. @us_peter Thanks for clearing that up! A shame, it would be nice if it was a clear system of having one design between each race win.

        2. Yeah he also has race overalls for each race. I heard it is a commercial decision. At the end of his career he will be able to sell many many one of helmets each with its own special significance.

      2. Lets hope he keeps the same helmet all season !

  6. I actually like Vettel’s helmet for this season (although I’m sure he’ll only use that design for about 3 races :-P)

    I also really like Charles Pic and Heikki Kovaleinen’s helmets, those two are probably my favourites.

    1. I’m sure he’ll only use that design for about 3 races

      Let’s hope it lasts for that long and Vettel starts winning only in the 4th race indeed @mclarenfanjamm!

      1. Reading this in 2013, amazing how @BasCD and @mclarenfanjamm were correct!

          1. Ha, one prediction/hope that came true, and is surely did a lot to the entertainment @kingshark!

  7. I miss D’Ambrosio’s helmet, best one of 2011. Raikkonen, Kovalainen and Rosberg have my favourite ones this year.

  8. Kovalainen FTW!

  9. Wow, Pic’s helmet has the Eiffel tower on it!

    1. It’s also prominently saying “CP” …

        1. I am a CP…

  10. Grosjean, Clos and Vettel, in that order, are the best looking imo.

  11. Thumbs up for Jenson Button, Kimi Raikkonen, Nico Hulkenberg, Heikki Kovalainen, Sergio Perez, Bruno Senna, Dani Clos and Jules Bianchi.

    The rest are a ‘meh’, apart from de la Rosa’s which looks unfinished.

  12. Kind of off topic, but still on topic….
    I found this moving picture of Bruno Senna with Ayrtons’ helmet.

    Its beautiful!

  13. Vettel, Glock, Grosjean and Kovalainen for me!

  14. The Torro Rosso squad pulling out all the stops to make sure their driver’s helmets are as easy to differentiate from each other as their cars are from Red Bull’s, I see.

    1. Pretty much that @hairs

    2. Yup. The drivers don’t get their own helmet design until they graduate and pay off their red-bull debt.

    3. @hairs, yes tons of room for personalization on that helmet it seems. “Look, I have an orange stripe & you don’t.”

      1. Were the Toro Rosso boys the same last year? I don’t see why they have to be so similar!?
        You can spot the difference of helmets long before the number on the car. As spectators, we wan’t to be able to differentiate the drivers straight away! Not wait for the commentators to tell us who it is!.

  15. Raikkonen’s, Kovalainen’s, Button’s, and I hate to say it, Vettel’s. Raikkonen’s black and white rune is fantastic, Kovalainen’s green is brilliant and fresh, and Button’s JB just wins.

    I also like Hamilton’s – I love the subdued colours and the lack of chaos, unlike in the case of Alonso for example.

    I don’t like the helmets of the Toro Rosso driver’s – unimaginative and boring. Having said that, Rosberg’s is the worst (I’ve always hated Schumacher’s as well).

    1. I love Schumacher’s. It’s just so menacing and prominent against everyone else’s generic swirliness.

      1. I have a half-scale of Schumacher’s Schuberth Helmet!

      2. I like Schumacher one too, the double dragon kind of like “wataaa get out of my way” :D

  16. Phwoarrrr, there are some cracking helmets this year! I’m particularly fond of Kamui’s and Dani’s, gorgeous designs! I miss Custards lid, I always thought that was pretty dandy.

  17. Kimi, Kovalainen and N.Karthikeyan has in my opinion the best looking helmets.

  18. I actually like recognising someone by his helmet. So I’d give two thumbs up for Mercedes, Mc Laren, Lotus, FI who have drivers who choose very different designs. I have no idea how to know who is who between Vergne and Ricciardo.

    1. The thing on the very top of the car (the English word for it escapes me) is in red for the first driver and in yellow for the second driver. Vettel, Button, Alonso and Schumacher, for example, have it red, whereas their team-mates have it yellow. @tango

      1. Of course @enigma , but the helmet is actually easier to spot on low def (and who is driver number 1 at Merc ? at Mc Laren? I’m a fanatic but I’m not always sure. I do know Shumi has the red helmet and Ham the dark yellow one.)

        1. It’s by car numbers – at all teams it’s the driver that was higher in last year’s championships that has the red colour. The only exception is Mercedes. Lotus, with 2 drivers that didn’t run last year, has Kimi as #1.

  19. I like Lotus guys’ helmets the most, especially Kimi’s. Whereas Rosberg’s is the most unexciting helmet I’ve seen in recent years. Pedro’s is in a class of its own. One hideous piece of head-wear.

  20. Mark Webber will launch a new helmet at the Australian GP

  21. It’s nice to see de la Rosa’s design stay the same, one of the few drivers these days who has maintained the same design for most of his career.

    1. @ed24f1 Yep – not my favourite but I appreciate the simplicity and the fact he hasn’t changed it.

  22. Brunos is best for me.. Although I can’t tell if that was a cool design before his uncle drove in it or not..
    Still, it’s got the most signifigance and character.

  23. Hulkenberg’s is pretty dull.

    Clos’ is quite nice, different. Shame we won’t see much of it.

    I like Raikkonen’s, Button’s (nice use of his initials), Kovalainen’s and Petrov’s.

    1. I quite like hulkenberg’s reminds me of the Rfactor logo

  24. Raikkonen, Kovalainen and Alonso’s lids are all great looking. If it was me I’d remove the “9” from the side of Raikkonen’s, but that’s just me. I do like the simplcity of Hamilton and de la Rosa’s, I’d rather have those than some of the insanely busy designs that a few drivers have (Glock and Maldonado being particularly guilty of this).

    The only thing we can be sure of for this coming season is that Vettel will not finish the season with the same design he started it with! :)

  25. Some nice helmets there!

    I really think there should be regulations to restrict major helmet design changes during the season…

    1. Not to me. But I suppose that’s because I pay a lot of attention to the STR guys as a Ricciardo fan. All you see on Ricciardo’s is mostly blue and a bit of silver at the top. Vergne’s is mostly silver with a bit of orange.

      1. Oops, meant to reply to the comment below. Sorry!

    2. I really think there should be regulations to restrict major helmet design changes during the season…


  26. It’ll be very difficult to differentiate Toro Rosso drivers. Their helmets are pretty much identical!

    Kovalainen has again the coolest helmet. I’m also liking Perez’s and Hülkenberg’s newly designed helmets.

    Sadly Kimi’s helmet is not that good. It would look better if he’d be driving for McLaren, but for Lotus the colors just don’t match at all.

  27. Luigi Carneiro
    12th March 2012, 14:30

    Problem with most of them is that they are very generic. Most of the new drivers just have the hemet companies create the designs. One of the cool things about helmets is that it expresses the drivers identity. What is more emblematic than Mansell, Prost, Hill, Senna, Massa or Piquet designs. I bet the mere mention of their names make anyone have the image of their helmets in their mind. Now mention Liuzzi, Vettel, Kobayashi, Kimi, and etc and what comes to your mind? Just a bunch of mixed colors and lines and curves. Looks great but means nothing.

  28. I love Räikkönen’s and Clos’ the most: the white thing on Räikkönen’s helmet looks very cool (ice-ish I would say), but Clos’ red and white pattern is by far the prettiest (by the way, bonus points for putting a dragon on your helmet!).

  29. Raikkonen’s Helmet designs are the best…though i’d say this year’s is abit empty…but still i think its the best…

  30. Wow! I like almost all of them! A big improvement than last year ,for sure.
    Vettel’s helmet is surprisingly nice and Button’s is even better than last years.
    The best one for me ,though, is Massa’s as it features my two favourite colours (green and blue).Also, does anybody know what is up with that snake-like sticker at the bottom left of his helmet?

    1. To me it looks like a dragon. And in Chinese calendar 2012 is Year of the Dragon. Could that be the reason?

    2. Apart from the ‘Aigo’ logo now absent from the front, Jenson’s design is exactly the same as last year.

      Personally, I prefer his ‘classic’ design that he used from 2000-2010.

      1. 2000-2010 apart from 2009…

  31. Trying to admire Vettel’s helmet is like trying to admire Lady Gaga’s look. It changes so often it loses all sense of identity. Just a relief that Vettel is good at what he does (driving) as opposed to Lady Gaga (singing)

  32. De La Rosa helmet is so 1990

    1. Roughly similiar to the time when he should have stopped competing maybe?

  33. Why did Paul di Resta have Italian tricolour on his helmet in the first place?

    1. Italian heritage, such the name ‘Di Resta’.

    2. It’s a real shame he removed it. Looks a bit too same-ey now I think :-(

  34. Rosberg’s design is starting to look a bit like Ralf Schumacher’s (minus the German tri-colour).

    Nothing much in the way of radical changes to the helmets this year, though.

  35. I love the Merc ones, matches the camera on each car.
    I wished Lewis could keep the same helmet from Abu Dhabi last year, that one was amazing.

  36. Bruno Senna’s (and slightly Hamilton’s) —> not a good idea in my opinion…

  37. Raikkonen all the way. But a lot of these helmets look really cool from the front. Grosjean’s look really good in his car.

  38. I’m not keen on the blue that Vettel’s used on his, but it’ll be changed before long! Glock has made changes for the better but Rosberg’s is horrible. As a sentimental so-and-so I do like the designs which are noticeably the same as the driver was using 10 years ago like Button’s, PDLR’s and Webber’s.

  39. Massa & Button do it for me. Although I’d like to see other profiles of Massa, but side looks really good! I also like Dani Clos helmet.

  40. Here’s Karun Chandhok’s helmet, thought its cool, hence sharing . .

  41. So Gutiérrez, Bianchi and Closare taking part in FP1’s?

    1. Clos are*

    2. Bianchi and Clos are, not sure about Gutierrez, some others will too such as Rossi:

      Alexander Rossi to get F1 running as Caterham test driver

  42. Must say I prefer the drivers who keep it simple. A helmet should be easily recognisable from a distance, having complex details crammed in just makes it look like someone spewed on it…. I love Kobayashi’s especially and Schumi’s, Rosbergs, Hamilton’s, Senna’s and Hulkenburg’s are all nice and distinguishable. The rest are just a plethora of poor design in my opinion :p

    1. I actually meant Raikkonen’s one I especially liked, But I don’t mind Kobayashi’s either!

  43. so much for webber saying he’s gonna make his helmet more aussie themed this year!
    i like hulks, raikonnen’s and vettels

    1. Can’t you see the faded Aussie flags in the blue paint on the front of his helmet? Hope he does a bit more though.

      1. he’s always had that though.

  44. This is great absolutely great and thank you. I have a further request. Please can this be put onto one of the drop downs on the menu bar at the top of the page to make for quick and easy reference especially during a grand prix. Also include a drop down for drivers and teams twitter accounts and drivers and teams facebook accounts for quick and easy reference and contact (i.e. perhaps create a social media drop down)? Thanks.

  45. Hulls is rather like Jody Scheckter’s.

  46. Hulks that is

  47. My favourites:

    1. Massa
    2. Button
    3. Raikkonen
    4. Rosberg

  48. I guess me and Vettel have something in common, apparently we change socks every 2 weeks and sometimes I even change socks every week just like Vettel.

  49. Love Kovalainen and Massa Helmet !!!

  50. Wow, we’re gonna have lots of fun telling Vergne and Ricciardo apart this season…

    1. It’s not that difficult. I don’t see why they had to put that stupid sliver falcon bank advert on the top of their helmets, but even so It’s really not that bad.

  51. soundscape (@)
    13th March 2012, 1:49

    The two Torro Rosso helmets are similar. Not making life easy for Ricciardo fans! :P

  52. Mark Webber’s helmet looks awsome!! Definately the best!

    Schumacher’s is classic Ferrari. Probably wished he never left the Scuderia.

  53. (In no particular order) Vitaly, Seb, Michael, Heikki, Kimi, Timo, Kamui, and Checo ;)

  54. I have to admit, I think a lot of the helmets are quite bland this year. Most of the new ones do nothing for me; Vergne’s is just another Red Bull design, and Pic’s is just a variant on Button’s design.

    I’d have to say that Petrov’s helmet is me favourite. He’s one of the few that don’t resort to corporate colours, like the Red Bull helmets or the black and gold of Grosjean’s (which would be good if it weren’t a corporate helmet). Second place goes to Sergio Perez because I like the bright yellow and Aztec designs. And third is Dani Clos, because it’s a little bit different to everything else.

    I still want to see someone wearing a pink helmet, though. I would if I were a racing driver.

  55. bluepoolshark
    13th March 2012, 9:32

    Most of these helmets are terrible. Kovalainen, Raikkonen & Button’s are just about ok. Why can’t these guys have exciting designs like most of the motocycle racers, how cool would it look if somebody had the eyes that Nakano used to have look staring out at you!

  56. Top 3 in my opinion
    Bottom 3
    1.de la Rosa

  57. Good: Alonso, Massa, Raikkonen, Grosjean, Hulkenberg, Kovalainen, Petrov, Gutierrez.
    Medium: Webber, Hamilton, Button, Schumacher, di Resta, Kobayashi, Perez, Ricciardo, Vergne, Senna, de la Rosa, Glock, Clos.
    Bad: Vettel, Maldonado, Karthikeyan, Pic, Bianchi.

  58. First row: Massa, Senna (cool upgrade of Ayrton’s theme).
    Second: Alonso, Webber
    last: Perez, Di Resta

    otherwise, i like when drivers in one team have designs different enough to recognise them from 40 metres. this season it’ll be worse at STR and FI.

  59. Bad-ass, every one of them.
    And to think I can’t afford even one.

  60. I think the best looking and most striking is definitely Heikki’s helmet!! That lumo green is great!!

  61. jsw11984 (@jarred-walmsley)
    15th March 2012, 2:54

    Hekki has just announced he’s changed his helmet to an Angry Birds inspired one, check his website for photos

    1. The best ever helmet. Bear in mind Rovio (creator of Angry Bird) sponsored Hekki Kovalainen.

  62. You must update Heikki’s new angry bird helmet here. The coolest one this year IMO

  63. Call me old fashioned but I preferred it when drivers had the roughly the same design for their whole careers, a minor evolution every season is okay but not a complete redesign.

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