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A funny take on Kimi Raikkonen's Lotus E21 steering wheel

by Ravi Ved Posted on February 27, 2013 19:00 IST 13,838 Views

While the motorsport press junta was expecting much excitement at the launch Lotus E21 launch, nothing could've prepared the them for what they saw in the cockpit of Kimi's E21. Here's the story behind the
wheel, pun intended




Lotus F1 Team driver Kimi Raikkonen




So, Kimi Raikkonen returned to sport after a two year break last year and put up a brilliant performance throughout the season including a race win at Abu Dhabi, which in itself proved that he is still has it in him to get that championship title. Having said that, the Finnish driver had often complained of immense discomfort inside the cockpit and of the endless buttons on the steering wheel of the E20, half of which he claimed were redundant. 


This pretty much put the team in a spot and after a lot of research and looking back at the Finn’s season, they were able to figure that one of the reasons why he went off the track onto the service road at the Brazilian Grand Prix was because he got lost and a satellite navigation system would’ve really helped him out. So while other teams were busy with KERS and other technical whathaveyounots, the Lotus team went all James Bond, or rather all Q on Kimi’s car and sorted him out with all the best gadgets a notorious funnyman like him would need on the track, or at least that’s that the new E21’s steering wheel would have us believe. 


For example, how would Kimi be expected to deal with a car in front that's not letting him pass? Well, he could do some typical slipstreaming and KERS trickery to overtake, or he could simply launch an Angry Bird at it. You know, the yellow really fast kind. Or he could just jump over it much like Speed Racer's Mach 5. A car hounding him from the back could be made to slip on a banana he deploys at the press of the 'Banana' button. So whether the buttons actually do what they say (though we really wonder what a ‘Jenson’ button could possibly do), it still presents a wonderful insight into the mind of the man of so few words.



Lotus E21 Steering Wheel




Mute button: This button was specially demanded by the know it all Kimi, to silence the annoying race engineers from telling him how to drive, something that he has been doing fairly well for donkey's years.


Ice-cream for the Iceman: Renowned for his love for ice-cream, this button sends a direct message to the team to ensure that they have one lolly ready for him just before he enters the pits.


Smile please! None of the photographers clicking Kimi in his Lotus have ever managed to capture him smiling. So this time round the team decided to have a purple backlit button which will glow and remind him to show off his set of chompers to the cameras.  


Sat Nav/ Open Gate: The 'Sat Nav' button was undoubtedly a must on Kimi's steering wheel knowing that he might just lose his way back to the track after spinning off. The 'Open Gate' is more for damage control; for the times when he forgets to hit the sat nav button only to end up off the track to find closed gates ahead of him.


Unmumble: This is basically a more advanced and customised Radio button to help the Lotus team to decode what Kimi wants to convey, with the help of subtitles of course.



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