Mercedes F1 just revealed a special new livery it will be running in at the 2019 German Grand Prix, and it’s pretty darn cool. Instead of the nose-to-tail silver paint we’re used to seeing Lewis Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas race in, Mercedes decided to channel its motorsports history.
Maybe you assumed Mercedes was always known as the “Silver Arrows,” but that wasn’t the case in the early days. There’s an origin story to be told here. Early Mercedes race cars always competed in white paint. However, a 1934 race at the Nürburgring changed that. Mercedes’ W25 race car was slightly over the weight limit for the race, so the team decided to cut weight by scraping off the white paint, revealing the silver bodywork underneath. This brought the team within the weight limit, and the car was able to compete. Within the decade, Mercedes made the official switch to silver racing cars, which earned them the Silver Arrows nickname.
Now that we’re all on the same page, this scraped-up, dodgy-looking white and silver paint job on Bottas’ and Hamilton’s Mercedes W10 F1 cars makes sense. Why do it this year in Germany? Mercedes is celebrating its 125th year of competing in motorsports. The starting point can be traced back to 1894, where Mercedes says it competed in its first motor race from Paris to Rouen, France.
It’s not terribly often you see Formula One teams design a one-off livery for a specific race, so we’re rather excited to see this at Hockenheim. Lewis Hamilton won the last two races held at the famous track, so we’re guessing he and Mercedes are feeling confident going into the race weekend. Make sure to check out all the photos of the fun livery in the gallery above, then watch the white and silver arrows on Sunday.