Sebastian Vettel has revealed that the Ferrari F2004 is his favourite Formula 1 car – but when he tried to buy one for his collection it was “way too expensive”.
The F2004 carried Michael Schumacher to his seventh and final World Championship in 2004, and the German won 13 of that season’s 18 races with it. His team mate Rubens Barrichello added two further victories.
Shortly before the Tuscan Grand Prix an example of the car was driven around Mugello by Michael’s son Mick, as part of Ferrari’s 1000th race celebrations.
The Formula 2 racer drove the same car at last year’s German GP meeting at Hockenheim, and in the past he has also demonstrated his father’s Benetton B194 at Spa.
Vettel took time to take a close look at the car prior to the run, and he made the revelation about his interest in it in an interview with his former Red Bull Racing team-mate Mark Webber, who raced for the Jaguar team that season.
“This is my favourite car,” Vettel said.
“If you look to our cars, our cars are so much bigger nowadays.
“Obviously we’ve got a lot more downforce, but this car is 160-170kgs lighter than ours, so big difference.”
When asked by Webber if he owned any F1 cars from that generation, Vettel replied that he had looked into purchasing an F2004 – but had baulked at the price.
“There was that one, not that exact one, but the same year up for sale, but it was way too expensive,” said Vettel.
“It’s an incredible car.”
Webber added: “I think I hit this car once in Turkey with Michael, he wasn’t too happy with me.
“But when I see that car I just think of sheer performance, and Michael on top of things of course. It was extraordinary times, wasn’t it?”
Vettel’s current team-mate Charles Leclerc, who turned seven in 2004, also took time out from his race preparations to look at the car.
“It looks crazy, it looks very, very nice,” said the Monegasque driver.
“But mostly it sounds nice compared to what we have now.
“It’s part of Ferrari’s history, a very special part of Ferrari’s history, and it looks beautiful.
“I had the chance to drive once the 2003 car, never the 2004, but I hope in the future I’ll have the opportunity to drive one of those.”