Williams was forced to abandon plans to reveal its 2021 Formula One car via an augmented reality app after it was hacked and images leaked online.
Instead, Williams launched its new car by releasing images of the FW43B, its car for the upcoming F1 season. The team has opted for a brand new look — predominantly blue with streaks of white and yellow — for 2021, the first year under the ownership of Dorilton Capital.
Williams had planned to launch via its own specially-created app at 1400 GMT on Friday. However, images were circulated on social media in the morning.
The team hoped the reveal would have allowed fans to give fans the chance to see the car up close via their mobile device or tablet.
The AR app would have also featured drivers George Russell and Nicholas Latifi in a virtual press conference an hour later. However, the hack also forced Williams to cancel that.
In a statement, the team said: “Williams Racing planned to reveal its 2021 challenger, the FW43B, via an augmented reality app later today (5th March). However, sadly, because the app was hacked prior to launch, this will no longer be possible. We have subsequently removed the app from both the Apple App Store and Android Google Play store.”
Claire Williams, daughter of team founder Frank, stepped away from her controlling role of the team last year after its sale.
Jost Capito has been installed as CEO. He said the new car had been painted in a way which highlights the success of the team’s past.
“Williams Racing is a sporting icon, and a team that has forged a reputation of success through sheer determination and grit intertwined with innovation, passionate and skilful race-craft and an absolute desire to win,” he said. “Highs and lows are typical in any long-established sporting brand’s journey and historic success can be a strong motivator, but it cannot be relied upon to define future success in the modern era of Formula One.
“Therefore, we have created a fresh new livery for the 2021 car; one that acknowledges our incredible past and retains the spirit, drive and motivation that remains at the core of Williams’ DNA yet looks to the future and signposts our long-term ambition to return to the front of the grid. Whilst we are just starting out on this journey and there is still a lot of work to do, we are happy to see momentum in the right direction and look forward to continuing that progress on track this season.”
The F1 season starts with the Bahrain Grand Prix on March 28.