Red Bull Team Principal Christian Horner has revealed the RB17 hypercar will see the light of day this year.
Horner told Sky Sports that the car would break cover, meaning we will presumably see the first renders shortly, as we have yet to see anything other than mysterious drawings that supposedly represent rough outlines of the machine [see photo below].
We know from Chief Technical Officer Adrian Newey that he often likes to take on side projects, remaining motivated for the main F1 efforts by undertaking such tasks.
Designing the Aston Martin Valkyrie was one such project and although that has been a reality for some time now, Newey has apparently felt the car could be sharper, faster and more spectacular and, given the car's ties to the new Hypercar regulations in the World Endurance Championship - less bound by regulations.
So having returned to his sketchbook, his resulting creation should be a culmination of all the lessons Red Bull Advanced Technologies has learned over the years.
Therefore it is reasonable to believe Red Bull's first home-built 'passenger car' will be crammed with F1 technology old and new, legal and outlawed: Dual diffusers, blown diffusers, ground effect aerodynamics, active aerodynamics... Where will Newey stop?
It means that Red Bull is likely to unveil two cars in 2024: The Red Bull RB20, with which Max Verstappen and Sergio Perez will tackle the F1 championships with in the quest to hold onto both Drivers' and Constructors' crowns from last season, and the RB17.
The latter's name was once destined for the 2021 F1 car but, when the sport froze the regulations and delayed the proposed technical changes for that season due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the subsequent challenger was named the RB16b. With the RB18 already in development, the RB17 moniker was left absent.
Since Newey wants to take the RB17 to the extreme, the car will be in no way state-legal and thus will only be available to drive on race tracks, unlike the Valkyrie.
An initial total of fifty will be built with the first delivery likely to be 2027. The price? More than $5 Million. But that will get you what is set to be an insane lightweight racing monster with 1250 horsepower made by perhaps the greatest design genius F1 has seen. Talk about unique selling points!