For the 2021 season of Formula 1, Aston Martin will be responsible for providing safety and medical cars for most of the races, while German brand Mercedes-Benz will still participate to some extent and will provide cars for certain races.
The British car manufacturer recently announced that the Vantage will serve as the F1 safety car, while their first-ever SUV, the DBX, will be the medical car. Both cars have been modified for their respective roles and finished in Racing Green, the same color used for the Aston Martin Formula One Racing Team car, with Lime Green accents.
For the Vantage, the twin-turbocharged M177 4.0-liter V8 engine sourced from AMG has been tuned to produce 535 PS, 25 PS more than the standard, to ensure that the coupe is capable of maintaining a consistent speed on the race track. This is crucial as the tire temperature on an F1 car can decrease when running below optimal speeds.
The torque remains unchanged at 685 Nm, but it can now be sustained for longer periods thanks to additional operations on the drivetrain, which Aston Martin says allows for “a more direct, precise driving feel and better controllability through throttle rise and fall.”
Other aerodynamic changes include a combination of the Vaned radiator grille with a new front splitter to generate 155.6 kg of downforce at 200 km/h or over 60 kg more than the standard Vantage at the same speed. Modifications to the suspension system, steering system, and damper system have also been implemented, with further fine-tuning of the underfloor system to increase front-end structural rigidity.
The modified Vantage is equipped with lower-profile Pirelli tires to complement the comprehensive aerokit, and the car’s carbon ceramic braking system has received additional cooling ducts hidden within the radiator grille to assist in brake cooling. The rear wing and the warning light system on the roof have also been added, along with FIA identification numbers and an illuminated “Safety Car” panel to aid driver recognition.
Inside, the standard seats have been replaced with FIA-approved racing seats and six-point safety harnesses, while two screens on the dashboard provide relevant information for the passenger. The center console has also been modified to accommodate a switch panel for various functions, including a camera for providing live broadcast footage. The safety car will be driven by the FIA-appointed driver Bernd Maylander, along with former racing driver Richard Darker.
As for the DBX, there hasn’t been much mechanical change, with the M177 engine producing 550 PS and 700 Nm of torque to ensure quick response in any emergency situation. The SUV carries a large medical bag, a defibrillator, two fire extinguishers, and a burn kit, all equipped with six-point safety harnesses.
Like the safety car, the DBX also features two screens mounted on the dashboard to provide live race footage, along with an additional screen for reading direct biometric data provided through technology in the driver’s gloves, providing crucial information about their condition in case of an accident.
Both cars also come with a “Marshalling System” and a rear-view camera, allowing both the driver and the co-driver to see which flag is being displayed on the race track, thanks to the illumination provided by LED lights. The Aston Martin safety and medical cars will make their first appearance during a three-day pre-season test in Bahrain this weekend, and will subsequently be present here for the season-opening event in two weeks’ time.
Hoang Huy (Forum.autodaily.vn)