2017 Launch News

2012 Liveries: The Verdict!

A change in format for the annual livery review this year, as I’ve decided to go through each team and award a rating out of five based on four distinct categories, giving a total score out of 20 to determine in truly scientific fashion which is THE BEST.

The categories should be fairly self-explanatory, but just in case they’re not, I’ll explain them anyway:

Colours – Er, the choice of colours (and shades), obviously. Specifically, do they work well together? How well do they make the car stand out? Are they colours that look good on a car full stop?
Design – How well are those colours employed on the car? Do any lines fit well with the shape of thing?
Sponsors – Have they got enough? Are they stuck in the right places, and – more importantly – do they integrate well, or clash, with the paint job?
Originality – Has the team come up with something new and dazzling, or simply photocopied a popular 1980s car?

So with that thoroughly clear and unambiguous explanation out of the way… on with the liveries!

Red Bull Racing

 



Colours: 4/5
Strong primary colours go well together and make the car stand out.
Design: 3/5
The flowing lines and bull have always looked good; the red wing endplates are a bit jarring, however.
Sponsors: 3/5
More sponsors would be befitting of F1’s top team, but the ones that are there are well integrated.
Originality: 2/5
Fresh when first introduced… but that was seven years ago. Needs a change.

Total: 12/20

Vodafone McLaren Mercedes

 



Colours: 3/5
Chrome/silver, black and red make for a menacing combo.
Design: 3/5
The edges and lines are bulbous, rather than the sharp feel of the West McLaren days. Lacking some dynamism despite the colour scheme.
Sponsors: 3/5
A little sparse, compared to previous years.
Originality: 2/5
It may be the team’s distinctive identity, but it’s feeling a little old hat, now.

Total: 11/20

Scuderia Ferrari

 



Colours: 4/5
Simple and classic. Only missing a dose of black, really.
Design: 4/5
Difficult to do this wrongly. The white sections on the wings work well.
Sponsors: 2/5
Portfolio and placement are generally good, but that “Not Marlboro” logo on the engine cover really lets it down.
Originality: 1/5
Not their fault that the car will always look basically like this, but still.

Total: 11/20

Mercedes AMG Petronas F1 Team

 



Colours: 5/5
The turquoise shouldn’t go with the silver. It just shouldn’t. And yet… it does. It’s a better silver than McLaren’s, too.
Design: 5/5
Beefing up the turquoise sections last year really made a positive difference. Refreshingly free of unnecessary smaller detail.
Sponsors: 2/5
Petronas stretching across two colours doesn’t work, and neither does red Aabar logo on endplate. Engine cover still feels lacking.
Originality: 3/5
Basically the same as last year – but at least that was a change from 2010.

Total: 15/20

Lotus F1 Team

 



Colours: 4/5
Black and gold are perfect. Only the red loses the point.
Design: 5/5
Despite being a poor colour choice, the red is actually used about as well as it could be. Line layout across car is lovely.
Sponsors: 4/5
Every sponsor beautifully integrated except for the needless yellow Lotus logo.
Originality: 1/5
Barely required any effort to put together, did it? I’ve forgiven them for last year’s naming fiasco, but still – this is a cloneasaurus and no mistake.

Total: 14/20

Sahara Force India F1 Team

 



Colours: 4/5
More teams should race in their countries’ flags, shouldn’t they?
Design: 3/5
Top half of the car is terrific, bottom half less so. “Missing chunks” design is a bit dated.
Sponsors: 3/5
Again, sponsors on the top half look great – but Sahara logo on sidepod is appalling.
Originality: 3/5
It’s good that they make changes every year – but it’s still evolution rather than revolution.

Total: 13/20

Sauber F1 Team

 



Colours: 3/5
Nothing wrong with white, black and red – if employed in an eye-catching fashion.
Design: 1/5
Inexplicable and dull from start to finish.
Sponsors: 3/5
Much better integration of multiple logos than last year.
Originality: 2/5
At least it’s not last year’s “effort”.

Total: 9/20

Scuderia Toro Rosso

 



Colours: 3/5
Stationary, it’s a “classier” version of Red Bull’s colour scheme, but they’re not colours that translate well on track and at speed.
Design: 3/5
Red at the rear and gold at the front create a bit of an imbalance – having a bit of each at both ends would work better.
Sponsors: 3/5
Good that the team have found some of their own, and worked them into the livery, but even in the later Minardi days there were more logos on these cars.
Originality: 2/5
Dazzling and inventive when introduced, the rampaging red bull really should have been put out to pasture by now.

Total: 11/20

Williams F1 Team

 


NB: the above is not the final Williams design

Colours: 4/5
Shade of blue a little dark, but it’s a good combo.
Design: 3/5
Not as good a recreation of the “Rothmans style” as last year’s was, and the nose section doesn’t really work, but it’s generally functional.
Sponsors: 2/5
Missing, presumed scarpered. For a team like Williams, it’s more than a little sad.
Originality: 3/5
It’s at least a different interpretation of a retro design.

Total: 12/20

Caterham F1 Team

 



Colours: 5/5
Drool.
Design: 4/5
Only suffers by virtue of not being the 2010 design.
Sponsors: 2/5
Layout (why the blank engine cover/sidepod while the monocoque is clustered?) and integration both poor compared to previous years.
Originality: 3/5
Another one simply carried over from last year.

Total: 14/20

HRT F1 Team

 



Colours: 3/5
Not a colour scheme I would have thought up for them, but it’s interesting. Darker shades of the Spanish flag colours make it look less like a fight in a ketchup and mustard factory than it otherwise might have.
Design: 3/5
The swooshy pattern is nice, but there’s too much white.
Sponsors: 1/5
Awwwww.
Originality: 5/5
It’s new! A new livery! CHERISH IT.

Total: 12/20

Marussia F1 Team

 



Colours: 4/5
Would be a full five if the shade of red was as dark as in 2010.
Design: 4/5
Much better than last year – although also much better in profile than it looks from the front.
Sponsors: 3/5
Fewer logos than before, but the only one not very well integrated is the team’s own.
Originality: 3/5
We might have been entitled to expect a more dramatic change considering the change in team name – but it is different from each the previous two years.

Total: 14/20

So there we have it – and it turns out that, despite being pretty much exactly the same design as last year, my favourite 2012 car is proven BY SCIENCE to be the Mercedes, with a score of 15 out of 20 – though honourable mentions go to Lotus, Caterham and Marussia. I also like what Force India have tried to do, but the execution doesn’t quite come off and I think they could have been braver and made it more predominantly orange.

All in all, it’s not as vintage a grid as 2010 was (though I doubt any grid will be for quite some time), but while most teams have stayed the same as last year (leaving us little to talk about), a couple have at least improved and none have really gone backwards. So overall that’s a win, I suppose.

Agree? Disagree? Shrug casually, not really caring either way? Share your thoughts in the comments!

6 Comments on 2012 Liveries: The Verdict!

  1. Merc and Ferrari can’t really change too much and they do a decent job with what they’ve got to work with. McLaren & Red Bull need a change soon, very dated and boring nowadays. “Lotus” should leave that livery alone and move on from the childish reasons it was picked in the first place. Force India have really grown into that design and the subtle evolution is fresh while retaining the team brand. STR should try move on to a different scheme to RB. Williams is very nice from the cockpit back. Caterham’s is the nicest on the grid I think. Closely followed by the HRT, I shouldn’t like it as much as I do but I think it’s stunningly clean looking. Also a big fan of the Marussia, and I like the way their logo sits.

  2. My top 3 have to be Marussia, HRT and Williams.

    I don’t think Ferrari can produce bad liveries, which is lucky for them.
    Red Bull, McLaren and Toro Rosso all fit into the “Move on for Pete’s sake” category.
    Lotus looks ok with the lighter gold now and Mercedes seem to have improved with the small black area and the back of the sidepod (subtly lol).
    While Sauber isn’t pleasant, I’m just glad they’ve moved on from the BMW livery.
    Force India is good but had more potential. I think it works partially because it disguises the step nose well.
    Caterham is good, albeit the same as last season.
    Williams, although once again with the dark blue livery, are pulling it off well IMO.
    The Marussia car is much nicer than both of it’s previous efforts and looks very nice on TV.
    HRT is also quite a pleasant livery. More than anything, that maroon colour looks brilliant on TV and wish they had more of it on the car.

    My rough summary hehe

  3. Having been at Melbourne last week, I can offer the following comments;

    -The yellow and the red on the Red Bull look outstanding in the flesh and really stand out.
    -Marussia doesn’t look so good, I’m not really a fan of the day-glo paint.
    -HRT looks nice, but didn’t get to see much of it obviously.
    -Lotus looks great.
    -The Force India didn’t look overly spectacular in the flesh really, the colours didn’t really stand out as I thought they might.

  4. The Sauber may be butt ugly, but I love how you can see the car number so clearly with it being placed on the step. The same goes for the Ferrari and Lotus too, although it’s less clear. Could this be the one benefit of the stepped noses?

  5. It’s been too long since something new happened here! Make an article! 🙂

  6. fandericciardo3 // March 5, 2015 at 1:06 pm // Reply

    I know it’s old, but like as I said before in the 2010 liveries verdict article, I will comment on what’s the best looking 2012 livery.

    1. Lotus – ” JPS colour scheme + Iceman = YES. Nice car despite having the red bits which doesn’t look really good at all, but it’s actually in favour of Total sponsorship from Grosjean. ”
    2. Caterham – ” This dark green for the car looks still good for me. Imagine what colour code the car will have from pictures of the car in sunny reflections. ”
    3. Mercedes – ” The silver colour is good. Nice turquoise touch to the sidepods, but it looks like the team’s last year’s livery with a bit of changes. Still good though. ”
    4. Red Bull – ” Still a nice livery but I can’t say anything more. ”
    5. McLaren – ” It’s a new looking Vodafone McLaren. Hugo Boss on the airbox like they did in from 1981 (if I’m not wrong) to 2001, it’s better for me. ”
    6. Ferrari – ” Can’t be in the Top 5 of the best liveries list because of the car’s front nose which looks dull. Still a good looking car but not absolutely good with that “Marlboro Free” logo… ”
    7. Marussia – ” Red, black, red, black, that’s what I say when I look at the car from the rear to the front. ”
    8. Force India – ” Striking touch of orange but there is a bit of lesser green I can see on the car. ”
    9. Toro Rosso – ” That red bit on the rear wing endplates makes me think of Renault/Lotus’ Total and the gold bit is what I like about the car. ”
    10. HRT – ” New livery which anyone always will accept it. ”
    11. Williams – ” It’s a nice dark blue Williams car, but I’ve put it on this position because there are better looking liveries. ”
    12. Sauber – ” It’s the blankest and dullest car of 2012, but Kobayashi in there makes me like the entire car BTW. “

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