Formula 1 teams won’t reveal their 2022 cars before testing

The Haas VF-22

This week, a multitude of Formula 1 teams reveal the colors they will wear throughout the 2022 season.

Haas was the first, with a tweaked white, red and blue design draped over a version of the VF-22 it will campaign in the coming season.

But it was a version from the VF-22 car – it was not the real car, at least not in its fully developed state.

We also can’t expect to see any other teams show us their latest and greatest efforts in any of the launches scheduled for the coming week.

“I think how different it is at Barcelona, ​​you’ll see it in two weeks,” Haas boss Guenther Steiner said at the VF-22 launch last week.

“It will be a little different, obviously.

“We’re not saying now it’s exactly the same, it’s a development stage and we don’t want to define that, but it’s going in that direction.”

Haas has spent most of 2021 working on its next-generation F1 car, effectively sacrificing the year in pursuit of performance this year.

By not revealing all that work, they keep a little something in their pockets and prevent their rivals from learning – and copying – their concepts.

Formula 1 is a fiercely competitive championship where the brightest minds seek out and exploit regulatory loopholes in search of a split second.

They also watch each other, analyzing their competitors’ cars in great detail to uncover any hidden gems the design team might have uncovered.

And so it’s become the norm that at this time of year ‘new car’ reveals are usually liveries and sponsor launches with the new colors adorning previous car models.

For the most part, the general fan doesn’t notice since teams often sport “presentation” fenders and things to make the car at least look the part.

Only for this year, and with such a dramatic rule change ahead of us, that cannot be done. At least not as much as it once was.

And so the Haas VF-22 that has been unveiled should perhaps be considered the Haas VF-22* as there are items that will be bolted on for pre-season testing.

When Red Bull unveils its RB18 F1 competitor tomorrow, we can expect much the same, as with Aston Martin the next day, then McLaren, AlphaTauri, Ferrari, Mercedes et al.

All cars are likely to bear a striking similarity to the Haas in terms of design, apart from a few minor tweaks that only anoraks are likely to notice.

In reality, all teams will be holding their cards very, very close to their chests and so what we’ll see over the next few weeks is a preview of the sport’s new look.

It will be like looking at a Monet in a magazine, rather than getting closer and being able to study the brushwork in the museum; what we see will be a good indication, but far from complete detail.

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