13 February 2019 · Dennis Schmidt

Same but Different: A Closer Look at the Renault R.S.19

The launch week of the 2019 Formula One season is behind us and we've seen both completely new liveries as well as evolutions from the previous season. One team that falls into the latter category is the French Renault outfit. Let's take a closer look at what details the Renault design team have tweaked.

Just like in 2018, the Renault livery is one that looks vastly different from every angle. Viewed from the top, it's split into a yellow front and a black rear half. From the side, it's completely black with two yellow lines following the car's aerodynamic lines. From the front though, it's almost completely yellow.

Not all is the same, though. The Renault Sport Racing design team around Christian Clogger, Chris Burnham and Sean Bull have made some subtle tweaks to the livery over the winter break. Compared to the pure carbon black of 2018, the Renault R.S.19 sports some fluorescent yellow on the insides of the front and rear wing endplates. These accents might be on the least visible parts of the car but make the car appear more vibrant overall.

The yellow line across the top of the engine cover has been made nearly twice as thick as the year before. Removed were the yellow patches on top of the sidepods. The drivers' numbers on the nose and engine cover have kept their outlines, but have also been filled in the same colour. That makes them more readable and identifiable but also subtly adds more colour and contrast throughout the car.

In terms of logos, Renault is of course in the fortunate position of being a works team without the need of a major external backer. This means the team can determine the colors, sizes and placement of their brands and sub-brands largely at will. While this is of course a bit oversimplified, it's arguably a very different situation than a team like Racing Point has to face, having to accommodate or even work around the logo and corporate design of their title sponsor.
There are only two logo changes compared to Renault's launch livery of 2018. Gone is Carlos Sainz' personal backer Estrella Garcia from the winglet near the front of the sidepod. On the front wing endplate, the logo of Renault has been replaced by its sub-brand Infiniti. Once again, the livery features all sponsor logos in either white (on black) or black (on yellow), making it appear very clean and elegant.

Elegant, yet vibrant

All in all, the current generation of Renault liveries is highly memorable. It has both a unique twist by looking different from every angle but is yet so simple that every child could draw it by heart.
It also manages to accommodate all sponsors' logos in a beautiful, simple white colour. All of that makes the livery appear very slick, polished, elegant and yet lively and aggressive through the fluorescent yellow accents.

If the French manufacturer manages to make a move up the grid and actually get the odd win this year, the livery has the potential to rank among the iconic paint jobs of Formula One.

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About the author

Dennis Schmidt is a graphic and UI/UX designer as well as motor racing enthusiast from Hamburg, Germany.