Will the 2024 F1 season be as one-sided as it was last year? It’s impossible to say, though fans will be hoping for the likes of Mercedes and Ferrari to close the gap to the Red Bull team, which dominated last year — particularly in the hands of reigning world champion Max Verstappen.
Unusually, though, while one team has rebranded there aren’t any changes to the driver line-up for 2024, meaning the same team-mates that ended 2023 together will be pitted against each other once again — and hoping to come out on top.
Many eyes will be on Mexican pilot Sergio Perez, for example, who started last year strongly for Red Bull but withered as the season went on, and often faltered particularly in qualifying. Will he be able to repair his reputation and prove he’s worthy of a seat beside Verstappen this year? Here’s our guide to the teams, drivers and cars.
2024 F1 team launch dates
All the Formula One teams have now had their F1 2024 season launches. Click on the links to see the images of each team’s drivers and car.
|Stake F1 (formerly Alfa Romeo)
|RB (formerly AlphaTauri)
2024 F1 team guide
Here are the F1 teams and drivers for the 2024 season. Which team will you be supporting this year?
Red Bull Racing
- Car name: Red Bull RB20
- Power unit: Honda Red Bull Powertrains
- Drivers: Max Verstappen and Sergio Perez
- 2023 Championship position: 1
Red Bull was rocked by a scandal pre-season, when boss Christian Horner was accused by a female employee of controlling and coercive behaviour. The Brit denies any wrongdoing but Red Bull’s head office launched an investigation, saying it takes such matters very seriously. How that plays out could be significant if he’s given his marching orders, given the success he has brought the team, though its not-so-secret weapon is car designer Adrian Newey, who has surely come up with the goods again for 2024. That puts them frontrunners to win a seventh constructors’ title.
Red Bull was in a class of its own in 2023, winning 21 of the 22 races. Most people expect the rest of the field to close the gap in 2024, particularly as Red Bull has been hampered by a 10 per cent reduction in wind tunnel testing last year, as a result of breaching cost cap rules in 2022. But with the RB19 being so dominant, you can imagine the RB20 will also be a race winner.
Verstappen, who was virtually untouchable in 2023 and clinched a record 19 wins, is a good bet to come out on top again in 2024. He was blisteringly fast and incredibly consistent, and the rare mistakes in qualifying were made up for in the races. He proved a much more mature and rounded driver than in 2022.
Meanwhile, Perez’s Red Bull career is hanging by a thread and he scored half as many points as his team-mate, but the Mexican finished second in the drivers’ championship and that proved enough to retain his seat for 2024. Both drivers are rumoured to be willing to drive for the team for free, such is their confidence in the car at their disposal.
A deal for Ford hybrid powertrains from 2026 means work is already underway on that transition, though that is unlikely to impact Red Bull’s chances over the next two seasons.
- Car name: Mercedes-AMG F1 W15 E Performance
- Power unit: Mercedes
- Drivers: Lewis Hamilton and George Russell
- 2023 Championship position: 2
There was dramatic news from Mercedes’ star driver Lewis Hamilton at the start of February when he announced he will be joining the Ferrari team for 2025. It broadsided pretty much everyone, as he’d signed a two-year contract with Merc last year that many thought would see him out to the end of his F1 career, but the British seven-times world champion managed to exercise a break clause allowing him to leave the team early.
It sent shockwaves through the F1 world, including the Mercedes team. Boss Toto Wolff has said he doesn’t know who’ll replace Hamilton; it could be an experienced race winner or a new young gun, nothing is off the table right now.
Before that happens, though, Mercedes has a championship to win. What it means for the team harmony in 2024 remains to be seen, and whether Mercedes decides to focus on George Russell this year — something the team would of course deny.
The car certainly has potential. The team went with a radical “zeropod” design for its 2022 car, though struggled for much of that year and when Red Bull was so much faster in 2023 pre-season testing, the team knew it had to rethink. So at Monaco 2023, a greatly-altered machine was introduced, following Red Bull’s approach.
That could pay dividends in 2024. Even though the turmoil last year resulted in no wins at all for the first time in Merc’s current F1 era, there were more podiums than in 2022 and the Brackley-based team managed to beat Ferrari to second in the constructors’ championship. Lewis Hamilton also ended the season as the best-placed non-Red Bull driver.
Although the driver dynamic is changing, both Brits behind the wheel are top notch. Each put in a solid performance in 2023 though Russell will need to keep his temper in check, as signs of frustration at times reflected a less consistent season than his cool-headed team-mate. One could say that Hamilton, as a seven-times world champion, has nothing to prove… but he won’t want another winless season and will aim to show Ferrari that he’s still at the top of his game.
- Car name: Ferrari SF-24
- Power unit: Ferrari
- Drivers: Charles Leclerc and Carlos Sainz
- 2023 Championship position: 3
Hamilton’s shock announcement that he is to move to Ferrari in 2025 will surely have an effect on the mentality of both its drivers, but in particular Carlos Sainz, who is set to lose his seat at the end of the year; Charles Leclerc signed a long-term contract with the team in 2023.
Sainz is a professional so will keep his disappointment hidden but whether he uses it to achieve greatness on track in 2024 or it manifests in frustration and poor results will become clear over the course of the season. Leclerc, meanwhile, says he was informed of the Hamilton deal ahead of time and relishes the chance to race alongside a seven-times world champion but one report from Italy suggests that the news was in fact a shock even to him, and if true that could unsettle the Monegasque driver.
Ferrari should always be considered a contender so it’ll be one to watch, though in recent years it has become known for poor strategy calls. The team was seen as Red Bull’s main challenger at the start of 2023, and the car was fast, but it ended up a few points behind Mercedes after the final round. While third in the constructors’ championship isn’t a bad result, the Scuderia, and its passionate Tifosi fans, expect more.
With that in mind the 2024 car is 95 per cent new, according to team principal Fred Vasseur, though as the regulations are unchanged it’s still considered a development of the 2023 SF-23. If it results in a decent step forward then it could be up near the front again.
The drivers will need to put the Hamilton news at the back of their minds and be at the top of their game. More consistency from both Leclerc and Sainz would be very welcome, as will a car that works at every type of circuit.
- Car name: McLaren MCL38
- Power unit: Mercedes
- Drivers: Lando Norris and Oscar Piastri
- 2023 Championship position: 4
McLaren didn’t have a great start to the 2023 season but after car upgrades for the Austrian GP was much improved, and the team was often the second fastest after Red Bull in the second half of 2023. Norris was a regular on the podium from the British GP onwards, though he missed out on his first GP win — something he’ll be hoping to rectify in 2024.
His team-mate Oscar Piastri was hot property even before he joined the McLaren team as a rookie, and when the MCL60 (named in honour of McLaren’s 60th anniversary) came good he lived up to the hype and even managed to secure pole position for the sprint race at Qatar, and went on to win it.
So with arguably one of the strongest driver pairings on the grid, McLaren will be hoping their new car picks up where the old one left off. A new in-house wind tunnel and a couple of top new engineering signings (from Red Bull and Ferrari) could help propel the team further up the rankings. The team also benefits from powertrain consistency, with a Mercedes contract running to 2030.
The team will be hoping that in turn encourages Norris to stay with them when his contract is up for renewal at the end of this season; Red Bull, Aston Martin and Mercedes are all sniffing around the ace, who is desperate to achieve the results of which everyone knows he is capable.
- Car name: Aston Martin Aramco AMR24
- Power unit: Mercedes
- Drivers: Fernando Alonso and Lance Stroll
- 2023 Championship position: 5
Aston Martin moved into a new state-of-the-art factory last year and welcomed two-times world champion Fernando Alonso to the team, racing alongside Lance Stroll — the boss’s son, yes, but decent on his day.
To everyone’s amazement, Aston Martin went from seventh best in 2022 to second quickest at the start of 2023. The results failed to materialise in the second half of the season, though, and the team finished fifth in the constructors’ standings, which after the early promise was a major disappointment.
What is hoped for 2024 is a car that is not just quick off the blocks but one that has a base that works at all types of circuit; one problem with the AMR23 was that it needed significant component changes to make it competitive from race to race. Aston fans will have to cross their fingers that the engineers hadn’t gone too far down the wrong path, and have managed reversed the decline over the winter months.
- Car name: Alpine A524
- Power unit: Renault
- Drivers: Pierre Gasly and Esteban Ocon
- 2023 Championship position: 6
Alpine slipped from fourth in the 2022 constructors’ championship to sixth last year, and fudged its signing of rookie star and its test driver Oscar Piastri, who was poached by McLaren. It’s clearly no coincidence that team principal Otmar Szafnauer, sporting director Alan Permane and technical director Pat Fry all departed Alpine by “mutual agreement” mid-season.
That turbulence, combined with reports that the car will be “front-to-back new” this year, doesn’t suggest good things for the team’s prospects. Plus its Renault powertrain is thought to have a deficit of 20-30bhp compared with its rivals — something that won’t be resolved due to the French company focusing its efforts on a new engine for 2026.
Its driver line-up of Gasly and Ocon are certainly capable of winning races, given the opportunity, but the pair are known not to get on, so all things considered Alpine could slip further backwards in 2024.
- Car name: Williams FW46
- Power unit: Mercedes
- Drivers: Alex Albon and Logan Sargeant
- 2023 Championship position: 7
Williams is proving to be somewhat of an unknown quantity. It’s one of the least well funded outfits in F1 and rookie driver Logan Sargeant was well off the pace for much of 2023, but the FW45 was the fastest car of all in a straight line and Alex Albon was able to capitalise on that at certain tracks, which resulted in the team going from the dead last in 2022 to seventh in the constructors’ standing last year. Sargeant even showed promise in the final couple of races.
It also seems to be on the up after James Vowles transferred from Mercedes, where he was a strategist, to become Williams’ team boss at the start of 2023.
All of which makes 2024 hard to predict, though the fact that the team’s engineering focus shifted to the FW46 around July last year could mean regular mid-table results aren’t off the cards.
RB (formerly AlphaTauri)
- Car name: VCARB 01
- Power unit: Honda Red Bull Powertrains
- Drivers: Yuki Tsunoda and Daniel Ricciardo
- 2023 Championship position: 8
Red Bull’s B team — which has changed names from AlphaTauri to Visa Cash App RB Formula One Team (or simply “RB”) for 2024 — missed out on seventh in last year’s constructors’ championship by just three points, but it could have achieved more. McLaren reckoned that significant upgrades to the AT04 resulted in AlphaTauri having the quickest car through low speed corners by season end, so it could be argued that the team underachieved last year.
Most would point fingers at the drivers. Not necessarily the cheerful former Red Bull Racing man Daniel Ricciardo, as he was brought in to replace rookie Nyck de Vries after the first ten races, due to a lacklustre performance from the Dutchman.
Ricciardo didn’t make too much of an impact on his return to racing, then broke his hand in practice for the Dutch GP, meaning reserve driver Liam Lawson stepped up for four races — and acquitted himself well. On his return, Ricciardo made a noticable improvement, the highlight being fourth in qualifying for the Mexico City GP, though the disruption wasn’t great for the team’s chances. He may make more of an impact in 2024, knowing that he needs to be race fit for the entire season.
On the other side of the garage is Yuki Tsunoda, who’s perhaps the most inconsistent driver on the grid. Seventeen points put him 14th in the drivers’ standings, and there were fewer retirements than in 2022, but he needs more regular points-scoring finishes.
That leaves the car. If the gains in low speed areas can be combined with reduced drag at higher speeds, the package could be a decent one. But ultimately this team exists to bolster the main Red Bull Racing team.
Stake F1 Team (formerly Alfa Romeo)
- Car name: Kick Sauber C44
- Power unit: Ferrari
- Drivers: Valtteri Bottas and Zhou Guanyu
- 2023 Championship position: 9
Last year this team was known as Alfa Romeo but really that was a branding exercise: it’s the Sauber team underneath. With Audi set to take over in a more hands-on way from 2026 when the F1 regulations change, Alfa has stepped away and so for this year the outfit has been renamed Stake F1 Team, after its main partner from the technology and betting industries. The new car has a striking green and black livery for 2024, reflecting the partnership.
Away from all the marketing, the team disappointed in 2023, finishing second from bottom of the table. Addressing this it has appointed a new technical director, James Key from McLaren, and has said the C44 will be a major change from the design direction of the C43. That puts a question mark on outright speed and consistency in 2024, as the new machine is fettled.
The driver pairing of Valtteri Bottas and Zhou Guanyu isn’t the best, but Bottas is highly experienced and Guanyu can hold his own in the midfield. Don’t expect much from this lot until Audi properly takes the reigns and the regs change, though.
- Car name: Haas VF-24
- Power unit: Ferrari
- Drivers: Kevin Magnussen and Nico Hulkenberg
- 2023 Championship position: 10
Poor Haas. It was the surprise of the 2022 season, punching well above its weight, but it didn’t have the resources to keep up with its rivals in terms of mid-season upgrades, and then in 2023 the team dropped to the back of the pack with a car that was found to wear its tyres faster than the competition — something it never resolved. There’s every chance the 2024 car will have sorted that out, but don’t bet on it.
There’s also turmoil at the top, with characterful boss Guenther Steiner having been let go earlier this year; Netflix documentary F1: Drive to Survive will never be the same again.
With Kevin Magnussen and Nico Hulkenberg returning, Haas has an experienced driver pairing who will get the most from the package, though of the two Hulkenberg showed last year that he has more of a spark and could make the difference, when the conditions are right.
We expect a handful of points at most but could be surprised — Haas has done it before.
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