Formula 1
Formula 1
28 Mar
Event finished
R
Emilia Romagna GP
18 Apr
FP1 in
2 days
R
Portuguese GP
02 May
FP1 in
16 days
09 May
Next event in
22 days
23 May
Race in
40 days
R
Azerbaijan GP
06 Jun
Race in
53 days
13 Jun
Race in
61 days
27 Jun
Race in
75 days
04 Jul
Next event in
78 days
18 Jul
Race in
96 days
R
Hungarian GP
01 Aug
Race in
110 days
29 Aug
Race in
138 days
05 Sep
Race in
145 days
26 Sep
Race in
165 days
R
Singapore GP
03 Oct
Next event in
169 days
10 Oct
Race in
179 days
R
United States GP
24 Oct
Race in
194 days
31 Oct
Race in
201 days
R
Australian GP
21 Nov
Race in
221 days
R
Abu Dhabi GP
12 Dec
Race in
243 days

The 12-month journey to settle Aston Martin's new F1 livery

When Aston Martin pulled the covers off its striking green AMR21 earlier today, it marked the start of an exciting new chapter for the Formula 1 team.

The green and black livery – with those streaks of pink – is certain to stand out when battle commences in Bahrain later this month.

Read Also:

But equally, the unveiling marked the end of a long journey that Aston Martin has made in coming up with the exact colours that will carry the British sportscar manufacturer's return to F1.

For while it has been known for several months now that Aston Martin wanted to use British racing green for its 2021 challenger, settling down on the specific green was never going to be the work of the moment.

Time and again we have seen teams get their livery colours out of kilter: making them work in real life but being a flop on television or in photographs.

That is why, as Aston Martin's creative officer Marek Reichman has explained, the final choice on the exact type of green used was something that needed a lot of thought put in to.

"It's been a long journey actually," explained Reichman, who has designed Aston Martin's road cars for the past 16 years.

"Colour is something so important. How you perceive colour, how you perceive colour on screen, how you perceive colour in person in sunlight, and also on a grey day at Silverstone, it's a really, really important factor.

"We have spent 12 months developing a colour. We've gone through numerous iterations on the livery – and it went up to the 59th minute of the 11th hour with detail changes to get everything right.

"I think when you see the car, it's spectacular. That's all we can hope for. And it will be the most beautiful colour on the grid."

Read Also:

The final choice of green appears on the lighter side on the scale of options that Aston Martin could have chosen, but there were a range of factors beyond the actual colour choice itself that needed to be weighed up too.

"I wish it was as easy as looking at Pantone colors and picking the right one," explained Reichman, who kept in close contact with F1 team boss Otmar Szafnauer as the work progressed.

"Developing the paint colour itself is so complex, because we have to translate that onto our road cars as well. It's not just developing a colour for the livery that sits on the F1 car, because people will say that they want it on their road cars when they see it.

"So you have to go through a full development process, which includes repeatability, damageability, repairability, etc, etc.

"And obviously, in thinking about the F1 car, I've got to consider Otmar's needs for weight. You don't want to be painting a heavy paint. So we've had to look at that as well.

"Plus, how do you get the reflective nature of the beautiful colour with the technology that we know we can paint onto an F1 car, and then put through our spray guns to put it onto a road going car as well."

Reichman also says that Aston Martin had to go through some pretty extensive testing of the paints in the real world to check that the final colour worked as well on television and in photos as it does when seen in the flesh.

"How we make sure it works in terms of red, green, and blue values on the screen is literally filming the panels and then looking at them through computer screens," he said.

"You use the right 4K camera technologies, and 3D camera technologies, all of that we have because that's the world we now live in in terms of augmentation, and how you replicate something in the world of design.

"Most of our [car] interiors now are developed in CAD and we don't actually do physical play models. So we have a high capability to simulate both colour, shape and form and ask the computer, is this colour corrected for the eye? And that's how we've done it.

"But it's been a long process, because you have to make sure that when people are passionate about colour, and they happen to come from the world of fashion in some instances and they know their colours, they love what you've done."

The final judgement on whether the Aston Martin livery is a hit or a miss will be argued out over social media for days to come.

And while modern F1 liveries are often criticised by fans as not being a good as iconic cars from the past, Reichman says there is only one true judge of what a beautiful F1 car is - but he wants the AMR21 to go beyond that.

"Always as an aesthete, you're looking for things to be more beautiful," he said. "But I'm going to steal a line from Otmar: fast is beautiful and I absolutely agree.

"So there's always more than one answer to a problem and how you resolve it. Only a few weeks ago, I was looking at the Jordan that came out of the same factory that Otmar is in now and that's a beautiful car.

"I think for sure, you always wish things would be more aesthetically pleasing because I just think people stare when something is beautiful. They stare and they're in awe. And I think that's always a hope."

shares
comments

Related video

Bottas looking to be "a bit more selfish" in 2021 F1 title bid

Previous article

Bottas looking to be "a bit more selfish" in 2021 F1 title bid

Next article

Aston Martin sets five-year target for winning F1 title

Aston Martin sets five-year target for winning F1 title
Load comments

About this article

Series Formula 1
Teams Aston Martin Racing
Author Jonathan Noble
The 'new' F1 drivers who need to improve at Imola Prime

The 'new' F1 drivers who need to improve at Imola

After a pandemic-hit winter of seat-swapping, F1 kicked off its season with several new faces in town, other drivers adapting to new environments, and one making a much-anticipated comeback. Ben Anderson looks at who made the most of their opportunity and who needs to try harder…

Formula 1
Apr 12, 2021
The delay that quashed Aston Martin’s last F1 venture Prime

The delay that quashed Aston Martin’s last F1 venture

Aston Martin’s only previous foray into Formula 1 in the late 1950s was a short-lived and unsuccessful affair. But it could have been so different, says Nigel Roebuck.

Formula 1
Apr 10, 2021
Verstappen exclusive: Why lack of titles won't hurt Red Bull's ace Prime

Verstappen exclusive: Why lack of titles won't hurt Red Bull's ace

Max Verstappen’s star quality in Formula 1 is clear. Now equipped with a Red Bull car that is, right now, the world title favourite and the experience to support his talent, could 2021 be the Dutchman’s year to topple the dominant force of Lewis Hamilton and Mercedes?

Formula 1
Apr 9, 2021
Is Formula 1 as good as it has ever been now? Prime

Is Formula 1 as good as it has ever been now?

For many, many years Formula 1 has strived to do and to be better on all fronts. With close competition, a growing fanbase, a stable political landscape and rules in place to encourage sustainability, 2021 is on course to provide an unexpected peak

Formula 1
Apr 8, 2021
How Williams’ new structure adheres to a growing F1 trend Prime

How Williams’ new structure adheres to a growing F1 trend

Williams held out against the tide for many years but, as MARK GALLAGHER explains, the age of the owner-manager is long gone

Formula 1
Apr 6, 2021
When a journeyman driver's F1 career lasted just 800m Prime

When a journeyman driver's F1 career lasted just 800m

Nikita Mazepin’s Formula 1 debut at the Bahrain Grand Prix lasted mere corners before he wiped himself out in a shunt, but his financial backing affords him a full season. Back in 1993 though, Marco Apicella was an F1 driver for just 800m before a first corner fracas ended his career. Here’s the story of his very short time at motorsport’s pinnacle.

Formula 1
Apr 4, 2021
How Raikkonen's rapid rise stalled his teammate's F1 career climb Prime

How Raikkonen's rapid rise stalled his teammate's F1 career climb

Kimi Raikkonen's emergence as a Formula 1 star in his rookie campaign remains one of the legendary storylines from 2001, but his exploits had an unwanted impact on his Sauber teammate's own prospects. Twenty years on from his first F1 podium at the Brazilian GP, here's how Nick Heidfeld's career was chilled by the Iceman.

Formula 1
Apr 3, 2021
The nightmare timing that now hinders Mercedes Prime

The nightmare timing that now hinders Mercedes

Mercedes and Lewis Hamilton took victory at the Bahrain Grand Prix despite, for a change, not having the quickest car. But any hopes of developing its W12 to surpass Red Bull's RB16B in terms of outright speed could not have come at a worse time.

Formula 1
Apr 2, 2021