New Aston Martin Vantage for F1 Safety Car in 2024

The Official F1 Safety Car has been a common sight at each round of the Formula 1 World Championship since the 1973 Canadian Grand Prix. While the cars used in the first 23 years varied (there was even a Lamborghini for one Monaco GP), Mercedes-AMG became the official supplier of the F1 Safety Car as well as F1 Medical Car from the end of the 1996 season.

Thereafter, the German carmaker would supply its powerful models which could lead the racing cars running at high speed when it was necessary to pace them due to work being done to remove a car that had crashed or clear debris on the track. Mercedes-AMG periodically upgraded the models, usually with the latest one.

2024 Aston Martin Vantage F1 Safety Car

Aston Martin cars since 2021
Aston Martin joined the FIA’s Safety Car programme in 2021, also providing a powerful Safety Car and fast Medical Car. The latter is stationed at the back of the grid before the start and its role is to bring a medical officer to an accident site as fast as possible to provide early assistance.

2024 Aston Martin Vantage F1 Safety Car

For the F1 Safety Car, Aston Martin has been providing the Vantage, with the DBX 707 SUV serving as the F1 Medical Car. The Aston Martins are used at some of the rounds, while Mercedes-AMG’s cars are used for the others. However, the driver of both F1 Safety Cars is the same person –  Bernd Maylander who began his full-time role in 2000.

Bernd Maylander
53-year old Bernd Maylander has been driving the F1 Safety Car since the 2000 F1 World Championship and when Aston Martin started providing cars in 2021, he was also assigned to drive them.

For this year’s championship, Aston Martin is providing the new Vantage which will make its debut at the second round which is the 2024 STC Saudi Arabian Grand Prix in Jeddah. Together with the DBX 707, it will be on standby throughout the race days, ready to be deployed when there is an incident.

Aston Martin DBX707 F1 Medical Car
The DBX 707 SUV is used as the F1 Medical Car alongside the Vantage F1 Safety Car.

No engine upgrade needed
Revealed just 3 weeks ago alongside its ‘Brothers in Speed’ – the Vantage GT3 racer and AMR24 F1  challenger – the new F1 Safety Car is a specially equipped version of the Vantage. It is powered by a powerful hand-built 4-litre Twin-Turbo V8 engine which has 30% more power than the previous model, making this the fastest of its breed.

Such is the performance of the new road-going Vantage, it required no engine upgrade, no changes to its cooling system and no upgrade in braking performance to adapt it for its role as F1 Safety Car.

2024 Aston Martin Vantage F1 Safety Car

To maintain its high speeds, the F1 Safety Car has additional, modified underfloor aerodynamics, along with an extended and profiled front splitter. For extra downforce, a new rear wing has been specifically fitted in a bespoke position with a tuned Gurney. The FIA lightbar has also received new aero-profiling as every millisecond of performance is vital whilst leading the pack of F1 cars with rapidly cooling tyres.

2024 Aston Martin Vantage F1 Safety Car

Special equipment for its role
Inside the Vantage Safety Car are various systems to assist the driver and passenger in their roles. The production seats have been replaced by Pole Position Seats to keep them firmly in place as they circulate at speed. A bespoke centre console is fitted with switchgear to work the FIA systems, along with screens showing live lap times, the track positioning of all of the cars and a rearview camera.

Nevertheless, the F1 Safety Car is still an Aston Martin so the interior has been finished in a unique Lime Essence trim referencing the marque’s own racing colours.

Aston Martin DBX707 F1 Medical Car

Aston Martin DBX707 F1 Medical Car

“It is a pleasure to drive the Aston Martin Vantage. The car comes from an incredible bloodline and this newest version is the fastest yet. My first impressions were very positive as I could immediately feel the improvement in handling and, of course, power,” said Maylander.

“We need a car that is fast and focused so we can respond quickly and safely when we receive the call for on-track deployment and Vantage provides that. I have enjoyed driving Vantage during the past 3 seasons and I’m happy to now be one of the first to drive the new Vantage and experience its full performance pedigree on the world’s greatest circuits,” he added.

Aston Martin DBX707 F1 Medical Car

50 years of the F1 Safety Car

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