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Red Bull RB17 hypercar project still spearheaded by F1 mastermind Adrian Newey

Newey will see the V10-powered track car through to completion before leaving Red Bull

Red Bull RB17 - teaser

The legendary F1 designer and engineer Adrian Newey will be leaving Red Bull in early 2025, but until then, he’s focusing all his efforts on delivering the company’s track-only, V10-powered hypercar, the Red Bull RB17.

Set to be unveiled this year with a whopping price tag of £5 million, the RB17 has been described as “the purest execution of an F1-inspired hypercar” and is the brainchild of Newey – Red Bull Racing’s Chief Technical Officer. He joined the team, which now has six Formula One constructors’ titles to its name, in 2006.

Red Bull said in a statement on 1 May: “The engineering supremo will step back from Formula One design duties to focus on final development and delivery of Red Bull’s first hypercar, the hugely anticipated RB17. He will remain involved in and committed to this exciting project until its completion.”

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The RB17 was first announced back in July 2022 and will coincidentally rival another one of Newey’s creations, the Aston Martin Valkyrie, plus other track-only cars like the £4.6m Ferrari 499P Modificata and £3.5m Bugatti Bolide.

In an interview during Red Bull’s ‘Talking Bull’ podcast, Newey said the RB17 will feature a V10 engine, reflecting the V10-powered Formula One cars of the late 1990s.

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The V10 engine will rev to an astonishing 15,000rpm and is set to produce well over 1,100bhp – trumping the already hardcore 1,000bhp Aston Martin Valkyrie AMR Pro. The petrol engine will be mated to a 200bhp electric motor to help increase power, but also provide drive for the reverse gear.

Unlike the Valkyrie, the RB17 is a track-only model, freeing up Newey to focus purely on the aerodynamics rather than having to adhere to road car regulations. We have no doubt the RB17 will deliver scintillating performance with its monstrous engine, and having been designed around a carbon-composite tub to ensure light weight.

Keeping the car stuck to the tarmac will be “the most advanced ground effect package available in a series production car”, according to the company. A blown diffuser - a piece of technology that helped Sebastian Vettel dominate during the early 2010s, plus active suspension will help generate lots of grip and the aerodynamics will provide the RB17’s own weight in downforce at 120mph.

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Production is set to start in 2025 at Red Bull’s 290-acre campus in Milton Keynes, turning one of the UK’s newest cities into a car-making city. Only 50 RB17s will be made and only in left-hand drive, with a price of £5 million plus local taxes.

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Buyers will have access to a package that will be tailored to their use of the car, with full support from the factory including servicing and maintenance. The 50 owners will also benefit from an exclusive relationship with the Red Bull Racing team, getting them access to the vehicle development programme, use of the team’s simulators, involvement in the RB17 development programme, plus on-track training and experiences.

The name RB17 comes from the lineage of Red Bull Racing’s F1 cars. Red Bull raced the RB16 in 2020, but the following year’s car was not deemed different enough to take the RB17 name, instead being called RB16B. Its next F1 car was the RB18 in 2022 and then the record-breaking RB19 in 2023, with its name also reflecting the number of years Red Bull racing had existed up to that point. However, in spite of Horner going on the record stating that the a 17 will never exist, that name is now set to be used for the new hypercar.

Red Bull RB17 design

As for what the RB17 will look like, Red Bull has only released an official sketch showing the swooping aerodynamic lines of the car and a cockpit for two people covered by a racing canopy.

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However, the sketches hint at the real thing looking similar to a series of virtual racers designed by Red Bull Racing for the Gran Turismo racing game series. The Red Bull X2010, X2014 and X2019 trio were designed by Adrian Newey, featuring similar aerodynamic bodywork to the RB17 sketches, including a canopy over the driver.

Speaking at the launch of the RB17, Christian Horner, who is the CEO of both Red Bull Racing and Red Bull Advanced Technologies, said: “The RB17 marks an important milestone in the evolution of Red Bull Advanced Technologies, now fully capable of creating and manufacturing a series production car at our Red Bull Technology Campus. The RB17 marks the first time that a car wearing the Red Bull brand has been available to collectors.”

Adrian Newey said: “The RB17 distils everything we know about creating championship-winning Formula One cars into a package that delivers extreme levels of performance in a two-seat track car. Driven by our passion for performance at every level, the RB17 pushes design and technical boundaries far beyond what has been previously available to enthusiasts and collectors."

The RB17 is far from the only track-toy for the well-heeled petrolhead. Click here to find out more about the similarly extravagant Czinger 21C...

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News reporter

As our news reporter, Ellis is responsible for covering everything new and exciting in the motoring world, from quirky quadricycles to luxury MPVs. He was previously the content editor for DrivingElectric and won the Newspress Automotive Journalist Rising Star award in 2022.

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