Since the deaths of veteran Justin Wilson in IndyCar and the promising young talent Jules Bianchi in Formula 1, open-wheel race car series have been looking at a number of ways to enhance driver safety without ruining the look and feel of their race cars. Formula 1 seems to have chosen the “Halo” concept, for now, but did they rush to that decision without considering other, better options? One look at the brilliant Velocity RPB closed cockpit racing car concept from Chris Beatty will tell you: Yes. Yes, they did.
“As a fan of high-powered single seater open wheel racing cars I wanted to create a design that removed the heavy reliance on over the (wing-generated downforce) and, instead, focus on mechanical grip with a degree of ground effect generated from the under body,” says Beatty, in his description of the project. “Current top tier racing cars have become so overly refined they’ve lost what a lot of us fell in love with them for in the first place, that interaction between man (or woman) and machine. That perception of taming the beast.”
“A lot of recent race car concept design and speculation has been around taking the current F1 car (or 2017 spec) and re-styling it by shifting around the dimensions and then sticking a load of plastic aero paraphernalia all over the surface combined with other gimmicks that tick all the ‘futuristic look’ boxes,” continues Beatty. “To me, this is just a development exercise of what already exists, and does not provide a significant change in design philosophy. I wanted to produce a car that would be a game changer both visually and in the way it interacts with the driver and the race track. At the same time, I also wanted it to look like it could conceivably roll out of a Silverstone garage on a cold spring morning for an initial shakedown test within the next two years.”
If you ask me (you didn’t), Beatty has absolutely nailed it. His Velocity RPB concept is absolutely the kind of race car I’d like to spend my hard-earned money to watch tear up a track on race day.
Is the Velocity RPM perfect? No. I’d like to see a front wing, albeit a simple one. I’d like to see a bit more height on the rollover bar to give it a bit more Jordan 191. Beyond that, though? I mean- wow.
Velocity RPB Enclosed Cockpit Formula Car Concept
Source | Images: behance.net.