Infiniti announced at the 2013 New York International Auto Show that it has named Sebastian Vettel, Infiniti Red Bull Racing driver and three-time Formula One World Champion, as Director of Performance. Vettel’s newest role at Infiniti reflects a closer relationship with the premium carmaker that formally started in 2011.
In this capacity, Vettel has already played a vital role in developing the carmaker’s vehicle line-up – like the exclusive Infiniti FX Vettel Edition and the all-new Infiniti Q50. Vettel was very instrumental in the development of the Infiniti Q50 from its early phases. He worked with Infiniti’s engineers in Japan, providing them with his chassis dynamics, performance and handling feedback.
He was also involved in testing early models alongside Sebastien Buemi, Infiniti Red Bull Racing Test and Reserve driver, in Japan. Testing was also done at Nürburgring in Germany and at the Formula One pre-season test at the Spanish Circuit de Catalunya.
As Title and Vehicle Performance Partner of Infiniti Red Bull Racing from the start of the 2013 Formula One season, Infiniti has strengthened its technical relationship with the Team. The carmaker’s announcement ensures Vettel’s future involvement in the development of Infiniti vehicles.
Making the announcement, Infiniti President Johan de Nysschen said: "Sebastian's talent and ability behind the wheel is unquestionable and his role in developing Infiniti vehicles has already proven invaluable. How many premium automotive brands can honestly say its vehicles have been developed alongside a triple World Champion? As our technical collaboration with Infiniti Red Bull Racing continues to deepen, so does our relationship with Sebastian who will be crucial to the development of our future vehicle line-up, ensuring Infiniti stands for passion and performance in a brand that challenges the status quo."
"I am really happy to extend my relationship with Infiniti and become their Director of Performance," said Sebastian Vettel. "Helping to develop the Infiniti Q50 was a very different type of driving duty for me but I approached it in exactly the same way as I do my Formula One car. I am looking forward to working closely with Infiniti in developing more of their road cars into the future."