Here are all the F1 cars designed by the legendary Adrian Newey

Red Bull Racing Chief Technical Officer, Adrian Newey prepares to drive the Red Bull Racing RB5 up the hill during day one of The Goodwood Festival of Speed at The Goodwood Estate on July 2, 2010 in Chichester, England.
Enlarge / When you’re a legendary F1 designer like Adrian Newey, it’s easy to persuade the team to let you have a go in one of your own creations.

Andrew Hone/Getty Images for Red Bull

In Formula 1, the car isn’t quite everything, but ultimately, how well the team’s designers did their job creating a racing car is a more important factor in a team’s success on track than how good their drivers are. It’s not that F1 drivers don’t matter, but even the best driver on the grid will struggle to earn points if they’re not in a competitive car.

One designer has been responsible for creating competitive cars more than any other, penning 12 championship-winning cars in 32 years. His name is Adrian Newey, and this week, we discovered he’s looking for a new job.

As in other sports, F1’s “silly season” is what they call that time period when contracts are up and people are switching to new teams; it’s named as such because it’s what happens when there’s no real news to report but you need a story anyway.

This year, the silly season got underway well before the first of the year, and it’s been sillier than most. First, Andretti Cadillac got snubbed by the sport—because an email went to a spam folder—then seven-time World Champion Lewis Hamilton announced he was leaving longtime home Mercedes, for Ferrari. Just as everything started to calm down, the Red Bull team started to look a little… implodey as Red Bull team boss Christian Horner was accused of inappropriate behavior by a female employee.

At the time, rumors circulated that Red Bull’s superstar Max Verstappen could try to use the Horner scandal as a way to leave the team. That didn’t happen, but something just as consequential did—it precipitated the departure of Newey. The superstar designer will finish the Red Bull RB17 hypercar project before departing the team early in 2025.

“Ever since I was a young boy, I wanted to be a designer of fast cars. My dream was to be an engineer in Formula 1, and I’ve been lucky enough to make that dream a reality,” Newey said in a statement. His autobiography, which tells the story of how he made that happen, is worth a read, but today we’ve put together some galleries of Newey’s various creations—an illustrated history of his career as the world’s most successful race car designer.

The early years

Newey’s first racing cars weren’t F1 machines. He started work at the race car builder March, and after working as a race engineer in IndyCar and then F2 for March customers, he designed the March 82G, aka the Lobster Claw, which raced in IMSA’s GTP category. He then penned the 1985 Indy 500-winning March 85C, then its successor in 1986, before leaving March for a couple of years, then returning to design his first F1 car for the small F1 team Leyton House in 1988. Newey designed Leyton House’s cars for March until 1990 when he moved to Williams as chief designer.

The Williams years

Williams was a much more competitive team then than now, and Newey’s FW14 turned out to be one of the most successful F1 cars, notching up seven wins in 1991 and 10 wins in 1992, earning Nigel Mansell the championship in the process. 1993 saw Alain Prost take the crown with the Newey-designed FW15C, then Damon Hill became champion in 1996 with the FW18, followed by Jacques Villeneuve in 1997 with the FW19.

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