New Red Bull RB17 to join the hypercar race
Four-time Formula One world champions Red Bull Racing are set to enter the car-making business with a £5 million track-only hypercar, the RB17.
Red Bull Racing, which powered Max Verstappen to the driver’s world championship in 2021, is well underway with the project under its Red Bull Advanced Technologies (RBAT) arm, which also acts as a consultancy to other businesses.
The RB17, described as “the purest execution of an F1-inspired hypercar” is the brainchild of Adrian Newey, Red Bull Racing’s Chief Technical Officer. Newey worked with former team partner Aston Martin on the Valkyrie hypercar. Unlike the Valkyrie, though, the RB17 is a track-only model, freeing up Newey to focus purely on the aerodynamics rather than having to adhere to road car regulations.
Power comes from a V8 hybrid engine expected to deliver over 1,100bhp. When combined with the RB17’s light weight it should offer scintillating performance.
Production is set to start in 2025 at Red Bull’s 290-acre campus in Milton Keynes, turning one of the UK’s newest cities into a car-making city. Only 50 RB17s will be made and only in left-hand drive, with a price of £5 million plus local taxes.
Buyers will have access to a package that will be tailored to their use of the car, with full support from the factory including servicing and maintenance. The 50 owners will also benefit from an exclusive relationship with the Red Bull Racing team, getting them access to the vehicle development programme, use of the team’s simulators, involvement in the RB17 development programme, plus on-track training and experiences.
The name RB17 comes from the lineage of Red Bull Racing’s F1 cars. Red Bull raced the RB16 in 2020, but the following year’s car was not deemed different enough to take the RB17 name, instead being called RB16B. This year’s car, running under revised regulations, has taken the RB18 name, also reflecting the number of years Red Bull racing has existed. However, in spite of Red Bull Racing boss Christian Horner going on the record stating that the a 17 will never exist, that name is set to be used for the new hypercar.
As for what the RB17 will look like, Red Bull has only released an official sketch showing the swooping aerodynamic lines of the car and a cockpit for two people covered by a racing canopy.
However, the sketches hint at the real thing looking similar to a series of virtual racers designed by Red Bull Racing for the Gran Turismo racing game series. The Red Bull X2010, X2014 and X2019 trio were designed by Adrian Newey, featuring similar aerodynamic bodywork to the RB17 sketches, including a canopy over the driver.
Speaking at the launch of the RB17, Christian Horner, CEO of Red Bull Racing and Red Bull Advanced Technologies, said: “The RB17 marks an important milestone in the evolution of Red Bull Advanced Technologies, now fully capable of creating and manufacturing a series production car at our Red Bull Technology Campus. The RB17 marks the first time that a car wearing the Red Bull brand has been available to collectors.”
Adrian Newey said: “The RB17 distills everything we know about creating championship-winning Formula One cars into a package that delivers extreme levels of performance in a two-seat track car. Driven by our passion for performance at every level, the RB17 pushes design and technical boundaries far beyond what has been previously available to enthusiasts and collectors.”
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