Old Formula One cars are kept on display, gifted to their drivers, and are used for advertising purposes right after their retirement.
Formula One is a sport that keeps on evolving year by year with all the new advanced technologies and features to its name. The 2022 new era brought in freshly designed cars with all new aerodynamics and chassis.
Like all good things must come to an end, the previous year’s race cars are duly retired from their duties for a step in the future. Here is what happens to the old F1 cars right after their retirement:
Cars on display
World Championship-winning cars or other iconic cars are on display for the fans to witness and have a rush of nostalgia. The cars are on display in museums, shopping malls, outside iconic venues, or even their own team factories.
The customer teams have to return the engine, and gearbox to their suppliers. Furthermore, the car gets another paint job with the new sponsorships due to contractual reasons and is ready for display.
Formula One drivers keep their driven cars
The F1 drivers train hard throughout the year in gyms, simulators understanding the strategies, and winning races. Their teams reward them by gifting the cars to their original drivers. Some of the instances include Jenson Button’s Brawn GP car and Kimi Raikkonen’s US Grand Prix-winning Ferrari.
Some of the drivers have their cars on display for fans including Fernando Alonso’s museum and Michael Schumacher’s private collection.
We visited the Michael Schumacher Private Collection What’s your favourite Schumi car? pic.twitter.com/MLBrCXBQ1M
— WTF1 (@wtf1official) September 17, 2021
Cars purchased by collectors
Many of the Formula One cars are purchased by rich F1 fans who are car enthusiasts as well. Some of the notable purchases include Michael Schumacher’s title-winning Ferrari F2002, and Ayrton Senna’s MP4/8A.
#OnThisDay in ’54 Juan Manuel Fangio won the #GermanGP in Mercedes-Benz W196 chassis 01000006/54. The car was sold in unrestored condition – tatty even – at the 2013 Goodwood Festival of Speed auction by Bonhams for £19,601,500 including premium. But what a car! pic.twitter.com/57AeX2j0Kx
— Matt Bishop ️ (@TheBishF1) August 1, 2020
Teams keep their own cars
Right after the season ends, all the F1 cars like to keep their cars for further inspections. These inspections include getting telemetry data for the next year, and research and development for the next year’s cars.
Furthermore, teams like McLaren, Ferrari, and Williams who have historic achievements in motorsport keep the cars in their factory. McLaren is famous for its ‘Unit 2’ storage facility where they have kept all of their cars.
Jenson Button & Lewis Hamilton visit McLaren’s famous Unit 2 back in 2010
getting the chance to spend a day here.
— Crash F1 (@CRASH_NET_F1) January 25, 2022
Demonstration and racetrack purposes
The old F1 cars are still of plenty of use even after passing the torch to a newer generation. One of them is marketing and promotion. Red Bull uses their old F1 cars for their social media publicity.
Secondly, testing drivers or old F1 drivers take the older cars on circuits for promotions as well. Recently, Charles Leclerc took Niki Lauda’s Ferrari out in Monaco before crashing it on the street.