We met Andreas Sigl
So then we asked, "Well, what does that mean?"
, the global director of Infiniti's Formula One
involvement (that's him above on the right), at the US Grand Prix
in Austin last year, and our questions to him were aimed at understanding what Infiniti was doing and where it intended to go. In spite of regard for its products and increased sales, few outside – and even inside – Infiniti
seemed to have a clear idea of what the brand stood for.
Its F1 partnership with Red Bull Racing
was a key example of that. A brand with no motorsports pedigree – save for a listless dalliance with Indycar
and the Infiniti Pro Series – was suddenly married to the world's marquee racing series, but one being continually declined by other brands and even its own entrants for a lack of relevance to road cars. The introduction of the Infiniti FX Vettel Edition
didn't clarify matters; we still didn't understand how Infiniti logos on Adrian Newey's chassis' made the G
, et al any better – or who was even supposed to make the connection – and if we were exceedingly cynical we could have said the terrifically expensive Sebastian Vettel
-fettled FX mutant was a marketing mission that needed a hand grenade but instead got a high-impulse thermobaric weapon.
Seven months after that Austin Q&A with Sigl, during which time Infiniti has become title sponsor
of Red Bull Racing and publicly anointed Sebastian Vettel
its Director of Performance, we met Sigl again in Montreal during the Canadian F1 Grand Prix
. It was there we got an answer to what Infiniti stands for: "We've boiled the brand down to the four 'p's," he said. "Performance, passion, precision and provocation."
So then we asked, "Well, what does that
mean?", and Sigl gave us some background on what's been happening behind the scenes of the partnership.