Wolff Impressed by Red Bull’s Courageous RB20

Mercedes Team Principal Toto Wolff recently expressed his admiration for the 2024 car unveiled by Red Bull, signaling its potential to propel Max Verstappen towards a fourth consecutive Drivers’ Championship.

Dubbed the RB20, this car marks a departure from the dominant RB19, which clinched victory in 21 out of 22 races last season.

The unveiling of the RB20 captured the attention of the Formula 1 world, particularly with its innovative design spearheaded by Adrian Newey. Following the test sessions in Bahrain, admiration for the new Red Bull creation has only intensified.

Wolff acknowledged the boldness of Red Bull’s approach, stating, “An extremely courageous step.” He further commented during an interview with Austrian Channel ORF, “Because if they had proceeded conservatively, they would have developed a really good car further.”

“However, the data is leading in the development of the car and the data has probably shown that these developments of the new car produce significantly more down-force or better driving behavior. Otherwise Red Bull would not have done it.

“And they have always been innovative in recent years, they were the team that was the benchmark. And in that respect, I’m convinced that they knew what they were doing.”

The noteworthy aspect of the new RB20 is that Red Bull seems to have incorporated elements of the zero side pod concept, which was previously unsuccessful at Mercedes.

Wolff conceded; “Not only the zero side pod, but of course we also had this bodywork engine cover, which we called ‘The Great Wall’, which they have adopted. It’s not marvelous aesthetically, but it makes sense.”

“But the real performance takes place on the underfloor. These are ground-effect cars, where it’s also about the down-force and the mechanical handling characteristics.

“And that’s where they’ve been very strong in recent years, and there will probably have been a further development, but not such a radical change of concept as you can see at first glance with the bodywork.”