The F1 2019 season is upon us and we’re tantalisingly close to lights out at the Australian GP this weekend in Melbourne. Rear View Prints has a whole wealth of content to offer you this year and help you get through the F1 calendar. Will Hamilton best Vettel again? How will young talent LeClerc deal with the pressure at Ferrari? What’s in store for new British blood Lando Norris and George Russell? We’ll cover all these talking points and more over the year in some fun and unique ways across our social media channels, so make sure you’re following us here, there, oh and there. Seeing as it is F1 opening weekend, we thought it’s probably best we do a blog about F1 just to keep that hype train steaming ahead. The topic we’re talking about is a big discussion point for many motorsport fans and one that we’re personally excited to write about at Rear View Prints. What are the best F1 cars of all time? We’ve seen some fine machinery over the years, and as time marches on it appears so does the sophistication of these beautiful beasts we see on the track. The question of best F1 cars of all time is not a simple one, you can’t boil it down to pure power or mathematical success, although these are both factors. The aesthetic beauty of these cars we love so much surely should come into play as well. There have been some seriously stylish liveries over the years, even if they have been covering some less than stellar engines underneath, but designs still ought to be recognised as a part of the package. At RVP, we think the truth is somewhere in between raw power and pure beauty, and we hope the list we put together reflects that. So without further ado, here are what we consider the best F1 cars of all time.
Red Bull – RB9 (2013)
Red Bull’s period of dominance between 2010 and 2013 saw them take 4 constructors championships, but it was the RB9 in 2013 that was surely the peak of their winning machines. The car was affectionately nicknamed “Hungry Heidi” after Heidi Klum, by eventual 2013 driver’s champion Sebastian Vettel. Asserting itself as nothing less than a highly dangerous weapon on the tarmac, the RB9 won 9 consecutive races and Vettel equaled Michael Schumacher’s 13 wins in a season. Rules changes in the F1 would ensure Red Bull’s dominant run came to a swift end, but it’ll still be remembered fondly in F1 history, and the RB9 encapsulates that period of superiority perfectly. There certainly won’t be many arguments against the RB9 being one of the best F1 cars of all time.
Maserati 250F (1954-1960)
The Maserati 250F is a real picture of vintage class and beauty, the type of car that evokes the true romance of Formula 1 racing. We hate to gush (or do we) but this car really is deserving of adoration and a spot on the list of best F1 cars of all time. More than anything, it’s longevity deserves to be celebrated, racing from 1954 right up until 1960 with private entries. Notable drivers included Argentinian maestro Juan Manuel Fangio and British legend Stirling Moss. The long, stylish and beautifully curved bodywork coupled with the bold red paintwork ensures this car will forever live in F1 legend. The 1957 F1 championship will lay testament to that too.
Mercedes – W07 Hybrid (2016)
There’s no car that sums up pure domination more than the Mercedes W07 Hybrid. Statistically the second most dominant car in Formula 1 history, the numbers attached to this car are quite frankly, unreal. Driven by Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg, this unrelenting beast won 19 out of 21 races and claimed pole in qualifying in every single track except for Monaco. We’re getting sweaty just thinking about it. A worthy contender in a list of the best F1 cars of all time.
MP4/4 McLaren (1988)
Remember we spoke about the second most dominant car in Formula 1 history just now? Well, time to meet numero uno. But let’s get this straight, its amazing record is merely one part of this racing car’s appeal. Yes, it won 15 out of 16 races. Yes, it obtained 15 out of 16 pole positions. But the depth of the legend of this car is so much more than its statistical mastery. It was piloted by two complete legends of the sport in Alain Prost and Ayrton Senna. The livery and overall design were absolutely stunning. It had all the ingredients to potentially be number one on this list of the best f1 cars of all time. But seeing as we aren’t doing this in any particular order to avoid controversy…I guess you’ll have to make your own minds up!
Ferrari – F2004 (2004-05)
Yeah, you didn’t think we’d get through a best f1 cars of all time list without a Ferrari, did you? The reality is, this list could be filled with more than a few Ferrari’s from different generations and years. We don’t need to tell you that it’s a legendary brand in motorsport and car culture overall, not just Formula 1. After much internal debate and discussion, we settled on a consensus of the F2004. Schumacher famously won 12 out of his first 13 races in this bad boy, with impeccable support from co-driver Rubens Barrichello who notched 14 podiums and 2 wins. It was to be the final car the legendary Red Baron would win a championship in too. Its lasting legacy includes records that still stand at various tracks to this day, including fastest lap at Monza and Hungaroring to name a few.
Brawn – BGP 001 (2009)
Tell us readers, what’s a best of list without some controversy? Controversy should have actually been this car’s second name considering the issues it caused. Officially a one-hit wonder, but what a hit it was. The BGP 001 was a result of an unfinished car by Honda after they withdrew from F1 racing in December 2008, which was then purchased and finished under team principal Ross Brawn, who then renamed the outfit to Brawn GP. So where’s the controversy I hear you ask? Well, it all relates to the infamous double diffuser which meant the car had considerably more downforce than everyone else. Despite complaints from other teams, the car was ultimately deemed legal by the FIA. Jenson Button won the driver’s championship with the vehicle and Brawn GP took the constructors crown in the 2009 season. After that, Brawn GP was never seen again.
That’s the end of Rear View Print’s take on the best F1 cars of all time. We know there more than a few cars that could still have made this list quite comfortably, but that’s what happens when a sport like F1 has been so successful for so long. What do you guys think? Did we seriously drop the ball anywhere? Feel free to drop us a line on Instagram, facebook or twitter! We will be getting more F1 prints in stock soon, so please keep an eye out. In the meantime, check out our current popular F1 prints here. Next time RVP dusts off the magazine and blog, we will be delving into the world of NASCAR and exploring some icons of the sport. We hope you look forward to it. Take care!