Revving up for the Saudi GP: a look at the 2024 Safety Car | CAR Magazine

Revving up for the Saudi GP: a look at the 2024 Safety Car

Published: 05 March 2024 Updated: 05 March 2024

► Based on new Vantage
► Bi-turbo V8
► Makes debut at Saudi Arabian GP

The new Aston Martin Vantage is here, and that means it’s time to see the new, updated Formula One Safety Car for 2024. Although based on the new road car, as before, the new Safety Car has a few performance tweaks to make it a little better at keeping 20 F1 cars behind it. We got to see the new Vantage a few weeks ago, but this will make its debut at the Saudi Arabian GP in Jeddah.

Aston Martin safety rear

‘It is a pleasure to drive the Aston Martin Vantage. The car comes from an incredible bloodline and this newest version is the fastest yet,’ said long time safety car driver Bernd Mayländer. ‘My first impressions were very positive as I could immediately feel the improvement in handling and, of course, power. We need a car that is fast and focused so we can respond quickly and safely when we receive the call for on-track deployment and Vantage provides that.’ 

What’s different? 

The Safety Car sticks with the same 656bhp 4.0-litre twin turbo V8 as the road model, ensuring a 30% boost in power – and there’s been no changes to the cooling or braking systems either. The aerodynamics have been tweaked though:

Safety Car and normal

Aston Martin engineers have worked hard on underfloor aerodynamics to generate extra grip and downforce for the new safety car, and there’s also a new front splitter too. The most obvious change comes in the form of a new rear wing, to provide better stability for the rear of the car. More subtle, however, is the new-shape lightbar on the roof – designed to reduce air resistance as much as possible. Every little helps when you’ve got impatient F1 cars behind you… 

safety car interior

What about inside? 

It’s all business inside, with the Vantage’s new interior adapted for use with the FIA’s safety systems. As you’d expect there are screens to show lap times, a live map of the cars and a rear-view camera too. Still, it’s finished in Lime Essence trim, at least. 

By Curtis Moldrich

CAR's Digital Editor, F1 and sim-racing enthusiast. Partial to clever tech and sports bikes