Formula 1

Sahara Force India reveal new look for 2015

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In a ceremony in Mexico City, the Sahara Force India team have revealed the new livery that will adorn their cars during the 2015 Formula 1 season.

In a move away from their traditional colours that have been seen on their cars since the team’s inception in 2008, the VJM08’s will be primarily black and silver with a streak of orange.

Although the final design of the VJM08 won’t be seen until the second pre-season test on the 19th of February, fans were able to see an impression of what can be expected when the car takes to the track at the Circuit de Catalunya.

Speaking about the new livery, which includes new sponsorship from tequila brand Jose Cuervo and the retained sponsorship from vodka brand Smirnoff, Team Principal Dr Vijay Mallya admitted he approved of the new ‘sleek’ look and believes it will appeal to the fans of the team.

“It’s another evolution of the contemporary look we introduced last year which reflects the growth of the team and the global brands with which we are working,” said Mallya. “I love the addition of silver, which makes the car appear more sleek and aggressive.

“The livery looks stunning and I’m sure it’s something that will appeal to the fans as well. Our traditional team colours remain integrated in the livery, but we’ve given it a very modern twist.”

The VJM08 has been designed as an evolution to last years VJM07 that took the team to sixth place in the Constructors’ Championship and saw Sergio Perez stand on the podium in Bahrain, but Mallya believes the team deserved more than that and is targeting more in 2015.

“We were on the podium last year, which was an important boost, but actually I think we deserved more than that,” insisted Mallya. “The target is to achieve more podiums in 2015 and we’ve taken some decisions recently to ensure we remain competitive.

“For example, moving all our wind tunnel work to the Toyota facility in Cologne gives us access to a tunnel that is a match for any team on the grid. Of course, there will be some transition time as we adapt and get up-to-speed, but I’m confident it’s a decision that will stand us in good stead for the future.”

An impression of what the VJM08 will look like was released during the event (Credit: Sahara Force India Media)

An impression of what the VJM08 will look like was released during the event (Credit: Sahara Force India Media)

Mallya insists retaining both Perez and Nico Hulkenberg for 2015 can only benefit his team, especially when he knows they are similarly matched and push each other hard for team honours.

“It’s always advantageous to have consistency in any area of the team, especially with drivers, and I’m very happy to have Nico and Checo with us in 2015,” said Mallya. “On balance they are very well matched and pushed each other hard last year. Sometimes it was Nico who had the edge and at other times it was Checo.

“Having that competitive spirit in the team can only be a good thing and I believe it helps drive the team forward. We know that they are both extremely quick; they’re proper racers and they always give their all behind the wheel.”

The owner of the team knows that they have a big job in hand if they are to improve on their sixth place of 2014, but insists they are ready for the challenge to build on the teams’ most successful season ever.

“2014 was a fantastic season for everyone in the team,” stated Mallya. “We were competitive from the off and took the fight to the biggest teams in the sport.

“I still remember sitting down after the race in Bahrain to savour the moment: we had finished third and fifth and were sitting second in the championship after three races. I think that made people sit up and take notice: it showed what we are capable of achieving and where our ambitions lie for the future.

“The challenge facing us in 2015 is to build on our competitiveness and strengthen the team in certain areas.”

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Thirty-something motorsport fanatic, covering Formula 1, Formula Renault 2.0 and Formula 3. Feel free to give him a follow on Twitter at @Paul11MSport.
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