Compare the new 2018 Red Bull with last year’s car

2018 F1 season

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Red Bull RB14, 2018

Red Bull made great progress with its RB13 chassis during last season. With only minor changes to the technical regulations since then, it’s logical that the team’s new car bears close similarities to the one they ended last year with.

As usual the team has chosen its initial images of its new car carefully to make direct comparisons between it and last year’s chassis as difficult as possible. However some stand-out areas of development can already be seen.

Front wing and nose

Red Bull RB14 and RB13 front wings
Red Bull RB14 and RB13 front wings

Red Bull’s vented nose was a distinctive feature of the car when it was launched last year and the same approach has been retained in order to meet the nose height requirements. The front wing is outwardly similar to the one the team ended last year with.


Red Bull RB14, 2018
Red Bull RB14, 2018
Red Bull sidepod, Yas Marina, 2017
Red Bull sidepod, Yas Marina, 2017

There was some surprise when Red Bull began 2017 with a fairly conservative bargeboard and sidepod design as they renowned aerodynamic team had been expected to take full advantage of the opportunities afforded by the revised technical rules.

Having later adopted the pioneering layout which was originally introduced by Ferrari, Red Bull appears to have taken the idea forward with its new design.

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Red Bull RB14 and RB13
Red Bull RB14 and RB13

This is the first Renault-powered (albeit TAG Heuer-branded) car of 2018 to appear which gives us some indication how effectively its new power unit can be packaged. The rear bodywork looks visibly tighter and smoother.

As with all the cars the most obvious difference is the addition of the Halo. The images of the car above and pictures from its first test at Silverstone today show a more sculpted design on the Red Bull as they seek to minimise its negative effect on the airflow to the engine and associated ducts and the rear wing.

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Author information

Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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36 comments on “Compare the new 2018 Red Bull with last year’s car”

  1. Vettel fan 17 (@)
    19th February 2018, 17:36

    Looks like Red Bull are relying on a good Renault power unit since there aren’t much changes.

    It feels like all the teams are trying to hide the halo so much that we can’t see any designs.

    1. To me the two cars (even compared to the end of season RB13) are totally different aerodynamically.

      1. Are you looking at the engine cover mostly, and the sidepods? They seem quite different to me, but it’s hard to tell with the (frankly gorgeous) paint job in the new car.

        1. @nathanbuilder

          I’m having a hard time getting the shape of the sidepods with the camo-style broken up lines from the paint job. Of course, that’s the point of the paint.
          I’m betting that those are not the real side pods they’ll race with anyway because the only think I *think* I can see is that there is almost zero undercut so either I’m not seeing them well or they’re fakes to throw other teams off for now.

          1. I wish there was an edit button….I meant to say:
            “…because the only thing I *think* I can see…”

  2. Its probably just the livery, but it looks like they increased the wheelbase.

    1. My eyes are telling me that too. I think they have shaved a fair bit off the area above the front suspension. That tricks my brain into thinking that the front wheels have moved further forward on the chassis.

      How did they cut that area down that much? Maybe they removed the trick suspension :)

  3. Now waiting to see what Silver Arrows brings to the table. Overall if RBR were to keep this livery it would be be the best looking car on track.

  4. Hard to tell exactly but the air intakes seem different

  5. Is that a real wing under the mirror?:)

  6. I love all the people who say they can’t see any differences between the new cars and old cars. It reminds me of when my wife says she can’t tell the difference between an F1 car and an Indycar.

      19th February 2018, 19:07

      Reminds me of when someone doesn’t see the difference between night and day.
      Especially for the side pods!

    2. @pastaman

      Or when we can’t tell they’ve had a haircut… or left us.

    3. Or very well, but do you also understand the significance of all these changes? The article was a bit light on details.

      1. @pdehaan Nobody will understand the significance until testing begins. Anyone who claims differently is blowing smoke out of their rear exhaust

    4. @pastaman it’s not that she can’t tell. She doesn’t care and would rather close down the conversation than discuss aerodynamic intricacies for two hours🙂👍

  7. A whole new meaning to their slogan “gives you wings”

  8. F1 cars look so old fashioned, they haven’t really moved on since the 90’s style-wise.

    1. Hahahahaha really?

      1. Really. A long thin nose with bolted on looking front and rear wing. I’m only talking about style, though it’s subjective, not the advanced looking aero you can see or drive trains, just style. The WEC cars or Formula E cars look more modern and advanced to casual viewers.

  9. The car is completely different for example, different side pods, f-duct, rear wing front wing, the nose of the wing, the radar tower, camera and of course the halo
    and probably the parts inside the car are different than last years.
    It is not difficult to tell apart the cars unless you are not that bright in F1 smarts.

  10. what a livery! they should keep it for the season

  11. Gorgeous car.

  12. I know it’s on purpose, but I would be so happy if at least once a Formula 1 team took the photos of the new car using the same angles and lens configuration as the previous year…

  13. “Red” Bull? Is there actually any red on the car?

    1. You would be horrified then to find out the bull is not a bull. It is a guar. So no red and no bull

  14. I don’t see an F-duct on this car, please enlighten me.


      If you look near the middle of the “3” on the front of the car, you can see a small inlet.

      1. No, I’m mistaken, that’s the S-duct

        1. Get your act together, man! Please!

  15. I think the Renult PU got a lot smaller, it is obvious form the engine cover, or just different packaging of the cooling systems. Unlike the Ferrari Engine that seems a lot bigger just by looking at Sauber 2017 with 16 engine and 2018 sauber with 18 engine.

    1. Todd (@braketurnaccelerate)
      20th February 2018, 2:37

      When did Sauber release pictures of their 2018 competitor?

  16. Mein Got… it’s a plane!

    That headcage spoils all the party, no fun wearing helmets now.

    Pre-season jokes aside… the old man still has it. This car obviously has more aero than any aircraft.

    Finally, significantly bigger air box. Looks like a trash can tho. But I’m sure it’s just a copycat and they still wonder why Renault was lacking power all previous years.

  17. Ah the perils of pre-season testing. Ricciardo had a little shunt yesterday, according to AMuS

  18. Keep getting gorgeous red bull paint jobs pre season then they revert back to the normal mess.

  19. Good analysis by Scarbs on ESPN, the highlights:

    * ALOT of rake
    * Evolution of 2017 Ferrari sidepods
    * Well developed even at this stage and he thinks it will be challenging at the front from the first race.

    Fingers crossed…

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