Now in their third year as a reformed works team, Renault are targeting an improvement on the sixth place they beat Red Bull Toro Rosso Honda to in last year’s Constructors’ Championship, with the same driver line-up that finished 2017.
Nico Hülkenberg is joined by Carlos Sainz Jr. – now in the last year of his loan from the Red Bull driver programme – with FIA Formula 2 driver Jack Aitken earning a promotion to the role of third driver. Russian prospect Artem Markelov joins the team as test and development driver, having seen his compatriot Sergey Sirotkin leave the Enstone team to partner Lance Stroll at Williams Martini Racing.
In a statement released by Renault, it was revealed that the R.S.18 is a “progression and refinement” of the 2017 car, featuring an improved suspension concept and greater aerodynamic downforce. The car also sports the halo safety device, mandatory for all cars competing in the 2018 championship.
Renault Sport‘s power unit has also been developed further after reliability problems arose throughout 2017. The R.E.18 1.6 litre V6 turbo hybrid unit has undergone thorough tests at Renault’s Viry-Châtillon base, in order to comply with the new three engine quota.
The R.S.18 has also seen Renault tweak the livery for the third year in a row. Whilst keeping the same colour scheme, the car is predominantly black, with a yellow nose, bulkhead, front and rear wing.