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2018 Livery Ranking

All the 2018 cars have been launched and are on track, which means it's time for the second annual Back of the Grid livery rankings!

11 - Haas VF-18

Yep, 11th out of 10 teams. To their credit, Haas have opted for significantly less grey this year compared to their 2017 car which got progressively more grey as the season went on, presumably to reflect the mood of Romain Grosjean after each successive weekend of brake issues. The fact that our least favourite is still not a terrible looking car says a lot for the quality of the 2018 grid, but at the end of the day its looks are based on an automated machining tool, so it's hardly about to get pulses racing.  

10 - Force India VJM11

It's not that it's pink, we're big fans of the extra splash of colour Force India bring to the grid. It's not even the shape, there's actually a lot less of a forehead on this than the 2017 car. It's simply that they've taken a bright pink car and somehow managed to make it look boring. A definite step backwards from last years effort.  

9 - Ferrari SF71H

Well, it's red again. There's not much more to say. Other than some aggressive aero bits, including the wing mirror wings, the most interesting thing of note is the removal of the definitely-not-Marlboro logo on the fin, although that may be in preparation for their e-cigarette brand making it onto the car. That's right folks, vaping has made its way to F1. Have mercy on us all.  

8 - Williams FW41

As expected, Williams have stuck with the traditional Martini livery (for the final time, as the sponsorship deal ends at the end of this season), but there's a lot less of it this time after they painted the bottom third of the car black. They lose points for not extending the Martini stripes along the halo, but the way the curve between the white and black paint matches it is a nice touch.  

7 - Mercedes-AMG F1 W09 EQ Power+

It's a corporate silvery grey, but it's about the most interesting version of corporate silvery grey you're going to get from a company like Mercedes. There are only four of the bluey-greeny stripes this time to represent their four constructors titles, they remain the only team to not have a thumb nose, and that's about all we can think of to say about it.  

6 - Alfa Romeo Sauber C37

  This is an interesting one. From the side it looks fairly good for yet another white car. From the front it looks like the Williams. And from behind... It might be the best looking car out there.   The new Alfa Romeo partnership gave Sauber the opportunity to do something brand new and it's hard not to feel like they've played it a little bit safe, but at the very least it's the best of the white car club.  

5 - Red Bull RB14

Remember when Red Bull were the exciting new kids on the block? Jumping into swimming pools and playing dance music in the garage after a race? For a brief shining moment this year it looked like we were going to get some more of that wild, two fingers up to the establishment, monocles falling into teacups action. But no, we were only allowed one day of pre-scheduled fun with their testing livery until they reverted to what is essentially an identical look to the last few years. It's still a nice look, we love the matte paint, but everyone wants something a bit more exciting from that company that brings us Crashed Ice, The Art Of Flight and soapbox racing, especially after the tease at launch. But more on that later...  

4 - Red Bull Toro Rosso Honda STR13

It was one of the best looking cars last year and it's one of the best looking cars this year. After season after season of Toro Rosso being "the other Red Bull team", it's great to see them finally have a bit more of their own identity, especially now the switch to Honda engines sets them apart from the rest of the grid. The blue, red and silver look great together and once again it looks like a fast aggressive car, even if in reality they're more likely to be fighting near the back.  

3 - Camo Red Bull RB14

What could have been. Red Bull launched the RB14 in this amazing digital camo livery bringing F1 Twitter and Reddit to a standstill, right up until everyone realised it was only a "special edition" launch livery. It was on the car for a photoshoot and the shakedown at Silverstone (until Ricciardo crashed it), before being cruelly torn away from us and replaced with the race livery which we've already covered.  

2 - Renault R.S.18

Once again, the Renault is stunning. In fact, with their black and yellow Formula 1 car and electric blue (no pun intended) Formula E car, they probably have two of the best liveries in motorsport right now. There's a bit more black and a bit less yellow this time, which could easily have ruined things, but instead just makes it look even more aggressive. And less like a banana.  

1 - McLaren MCL33

After weeks of teasing a return to their traditional papaya orange rather than the not quite right orange of 2017, we thought we knew what to expect from McLaren, but the final car reveal (accidental wind assisted airport reveal aside) was still a surprise. It's not just orange, it's completely, uniquely, dazzlingly orange. And then that flash of blue across the fin and wings. It shouldn't work but it does. The initial studio photos left us a little unsure, but on track in natural light it's an incredible looking car. If there is one criticism, it's that the new colour makes McLaren's lack of sponsors even more obvious. That expanse of blank orange on the engine cover looks like something you'd see on a Formula 4 car rather than one of the most historic teams in motorsport, but if the car can go as fast as it looks they shouldn't have too much trouble filling the space. That's what we think, but what's your favourite? Be sure to let us know how wrong we are in the comments, or on Twitter and Facebook.