They are renowned for closely guarding the secret inner-workings of their multi-million pound vehicles.
But one Formula 1 boss has defied his competitors by allowing an artist to display his team’s £30million pride and joy – suspended piece-by-piece from a gallery ceiling.
Nick Fry, chief executive of the Mercedes GP Petronas Formula 1 Team, had no qualms about last season’s MGP W01 car – driven by seven-time world champion Michael Schumacher – being deconstructed.
Dutch artist Paul Veroude disassembled 3,200 components and then suspended them on wire.
The effect is akin to the car having just exploded a fraction of a second earlier, before being frozen in time.
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It took Mr Veroude a long time to complete his task, but not as long as it took the Mercedes team to build their car.
Engineers at the German manufacturer spent 90,000 hours of design time and 200,000 hours to manufacture the vehicle.
Made out of carbon fibre, titanium, aluminium and magnesium, a Formula 1 car weighs just a little over 600kg.
Mr Veroude’s work is on display at the Mercedes-Benz World exhibition at Brooklands, near Weybridge, Surrey.
The Mercedes team made the headlines at the start of last year’s season when it emerged Schumacher had banked £30million a year to make the most astonishing comeback in motor racing history.
The team had briefed the press that they were paying Schumacher £6million when they unveiled him as their star driver in December 2009, but it then transpired he was receiving a basic salary of around £21million plus a further £9million in private endorsements.
It made the 42-year-old German the highest paid driver on the 2010 grid.