Sahara Force India were the first to unveil their new 2014 contender the VJM07, as the team released an image of the car on Wednesday morning.
The team said on their website that “paint schemes are the skins and souls of Formula One cars” and they’ve worked hard to maintain a distinctive look but have brought a fresh “aggressive” look to the grid this year introducing black alongside the traditional colours of saffron, white and green.
Vijay Mallya is very pleased with the new look VJM07 saying, “The VJM07 looks stunning and the new livery reflects the way Sahara Force India is evolving. I’ve always believed our cars have been the most eye-catching, but adding black as a main colour gives us a fierce new look.”
A number of new commercial partners have been introduced including telecommunications brand, Claro, signalling the start of a multi-year deal with the team. Their logo is displayed on the engine cover and there will be prominent Claro branding on the drivers’ race suits and kit.
Other new sponsor branding on the VJM07 include lubricant oils specialists, Roshfrans who have also inked a multi-year partnership with the team and Astana, a foundation supporting sporting and promoting the capital city of Kazakhstan.
Mallya went on to explain, ““It’s been a busy winter for us on the technical and commercial front. “When I founded the team my first ambition was to launch the first Indian team on the grid, but the next stage in our evolution is to develop a global brand. I think that ambition is reflected in the partners we are working with and our world class driver line-up. It certainly feels as though there is the potential for 2014 to be our strongest season yet.”
The team said on their website, “As we enter our seventh season, this new fresh, dynamic look signals the team’s renewed ambition – the next step in our shareholders’ bold vision. Having achieved the objective to have an Indian team on the grid and having signed world-class drivers, our sights now turn towards the next target.
Sahara Force India’s contemporary new look heralds the evolution into a global brand, supported by passionate fans the world over, ready to pounce on the higher echelons of the grid.”
There are also a number of technical improvements and changes to the VJM07. “The new rules have presented us with a huge challenge, but I’m very proud of the approach we have taken and the direction of the technical team,” said Mallya. “It will be fascinating to see how different teams have interpreted the rules and at this stage it’s impossible to predict who has done the best job.”
Technical Director, Andrew Green, explained just how different the VJM07 is compared to the VJM06, “Almost every single part is a new design, from the front wing right back to the diffuser. The genetics of the VJM07 still lie in the 2013 car, but we’ve had to achieve the same results in a slightly different way.”
Green said that accommodating the power unit was the biggest challenge for the team, “It’s been a massive job to accommodate all the changes to the power unit – it’s the biggest change I’ve witnessed in the sport since I started in 1990. Cooling has been the biggest challenge with most of last summer taken up trying to understand the cooling requirements of the power unit, and how best to optimise it in the chassis.”