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How to Build a Car

Narrated by: Richard Trinder
Length: 12 hrs and 26 mins
5 out of 5 stars (802 ratings)

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Summary

The world's foremost designer in Formula One, Adrian Newey OBE is arguably one of Britain's greatest engineers and this is his fascinating, powerful memoir.

How to Build a Car explores the story of Adrian's unrivalled 35-year career in Formula One through the prism of the cars he has designed, the drivers he has worked alongside and the races in which he's been involved.

A true engineering genius, even in adolescence Adrian's thoughts naturally emerged in shape and form - he began sketching his own car designs at the age of 12 and took a welding course in his school summer holidays. From his early career in IndyCar racing and on to his unparalleled success in Formula One, we learn in comprehensive, engaging and highly entertaining detail how a car actually works. Adrian has designed for the likes of Mario Andretti, Nigel Mansell, Alain Prost, Damon Hill, David Coulthard, Mika Hakkinen, Mark Webber and Sebastian Vettel, always with a shark-like purity of purpose: to make the car go faster. And while his career has been marked by unbelievable triumphs, there have also been deep tragedies: most notably Ayrton Senna's death during his time at Williams in 1994.

How to Build a Car encapsulates, through Adrian's remarkable life story, precisely what makes Formula One so thrilling - its potential for the total synchronicity of man and machine, the perfect combination of style, efficiency and speed.

PLEASE NOTE: When you purchase this title, the accompanying reference material will be available in your Library section along with the audio.

©2017 Adrian Newey (P)2017 HarperCollins Publishers

Critic reviews

"The greatest Formula One designer of his - or any other - age." ( The Sunday Times)
"Newey has a legitimate claim on the title of 'Britain's greatest living engineer'." ( The Daily Telegraph)
"Adrian Newey has created more winners than all the super-brain computers in Formula One put together." ( The Times)

What listeners say about How to Build a Car

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So much better than you think it will be!

Don't worry it's not too technical.
Funny, entertaining, fascinating, historical, nostalgic. A must listen for any F1 fan.

If you listen to Damon Hill's and Mark Webber's books aswel there's some nice overlap with some of the stories - so you get at least two perspecitves on some events.

For me I expected it to be a dry, tiring listen full of technical babble I didn't understand - given the subject and what I have seen of Adrian Newey interviews. Couldn't be more wrong. He is extremely funny, explains everything in a way that you can relate to and understand (think of that teacher at school who just had a way of explaining things that made everything make sense to you).

I was unsure about this book... I bought it and now have listend to it twice, and enjoyed every minute both times.
Trust me, just buy it, you WILL enjoy it!

4 people found this helpful

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Good book overall

As a motorsport, automotive and engineering fan, I found this book to be very good. The main reason it didn't get 5* was because of Adrian's incorrect statements about EVs being an environmental red herring solution.

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Every F1 fan will love it

If you like F1 you will enjoy this book. Adrian Newey has enormous experience in F1 and his stories are very interesting.

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Very good but irritated

The book is very good, it’s very technical which is exactly what you expect from the author.

BUT...

The narrator is really irritating, he’s voice is fine and performance is fine but he clearly knows nothing about F1, miss Pronunciation on names and technical subjects which really should have been picked up by someone.

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Loved hearing Adrian's story

Found his time in Red Bull the most interesting and also getting inside story of few things happening within the team that outside media doesn't get access to.

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Fact is better than fiction!

This guy has written his story, warts and all, about how he had a dream and turned it in to heroic glory!
He doesn’t let money, fame, power or vanity get in his way. He sees a problem, evaluates circumstances, probes ideas and executes.
Can you say the same about your life? He’ll tell you how he did it! Brilliant!

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Really good but...

Really enjoyed this audiobook as an avid F1 fan. The content written by Adrian is really insightful and the pure engineering knowledge he has just blew my tiny mind and it made me chuckle with some of the drunken stories from after win party's. However, where I was really let down was the narration, his voice is incredible and I can apsolutely see how he is probably really successful but his f1 knowledge clearly isn't up to scratch as some of the pronunciations of tracks, driver names and technical items was just soo off putting it was a real struggle to finish this book but was actually worth it in the end. Would be a 5/5 review from me if it was read by Adrian but Richard just doesn't get pole position in my opinion. Thanks

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Amazing

A good book very interesting a must read for F1 fans and car lovers a like.

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An absorbing insight in to motorsport engineering

Excellent narration of a fascinating insight in to the personalities and high politics of F1. A book for the general motorsport enthusiast as much as for out and out petrolheads. Worth listening to for Newey's perspective on Ayrton's death at Imola alone and also for his take on the Williams/Head and Dennis approaches to people management.

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Great insight into F1 cars

A good insight into the inner world of F1 and the workings that go into designing the cars, The regulations the govern them plus a touch of personal life

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  • moo
  • 09-02-20

Snooze fest

As an F1 fan and car enthusiast I found this book a massive let down. Somehow Adrian has managed to skip most of the interesting parts of his career. He tells the stories in such a way it’s like listening to a weather forecast. For example; he goes to the trouble of spelling out every car license plate he’s ever owned. He drones on about the career of his daughters, I’m not interested in the lives of your children. I wanted to know the tech behind F1 and interesting highlights from a long career. Instead this book is a weird mix of ego and unnecessary details. The author talks down to the listener and dumbs down most technical details. If you’re into F1 Ross Browns book is far more interesting.

1 person found this helpful

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  • TohirT
  • 21-09-18

A Must for any F1 or racing fan

Adrian’s name is synonymous with championships across Indy and primarily F1. What I didn’t know is the entire story behind this extraordinary man. Well he is not. He is just a guy with a passion and a vision. I loved every chapter of this book. Especially all the F1 anecdotes from his career. Those have me a new perspective on a lot of events I’ve observed as an ignorant fan :)

1 person found this helpful

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  • crispy
  • 07-07-20

one of the best books I've read

it was an incredible book, one of the best books I've read in a long time

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  • Malachi Drew
  • 12-06-20

Great combination of engineering and stories

I found the engineering, especially the aerodynamics, absolutely fascinating. Additionally, the story aspect added interest, while not distracting from the engineering.

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  • rodrigo camus
  • 15-05-20

must for any F1 fan. Newey is a genius

It's great to understand what happened behind the scenes in formula 1. Also to see who is the real champion or the last few years

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  • avaca
  • 09-04-20

Awesome

The story is great and talks about f1 a lot mostly about Aerodynamic’s but is a really great story



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  • Joselo
  • 14-03-20

Fasten your seat belts!

This book is a must for anyone who's even remotely interested in F1. Newey is a legendary race engineer and aerodynamicist whose designs have won an outstanding 10 Constructor's Championships. The book is very well written and has a great pace. It's tone is casual, as if a friend were passionately telling you all the ins and outs of his job. He shares plenty of anecdotes and inside stories involving other great legends of the sport, all of which is bound to make any fan even more excited about watching the next race! I learned a lot from this audiobook and it gave me a new understanding of F1. One can get a sense of the pressure that these hyper-competitive people go through, the challenges that they face, the toll that their work takes on their family lives, their obsession with finding loopholes in the rules and being one step ahead of their rivals... Obviously, in a sport that combines the ability of extremely talented drivers with technological innovation, the engineer plays a key role. There are moments of well-deserved gratification and also tragic episodes (like the death of triple-world champion, Ayrton Senna). Newey also speaks of his involvement in other projects outside of F1. His memoir is mostly a celebration of racing... and of Adrian Newey himself, of course. Narrator Richard Trinder delivers the material somewhat flatly, but efficiently.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 17-01-20

biography of a F1 engineer and the cars he created

I recommend to any motorsports lover. this is an autobiography of Adrian Newey, a top F1 engineer. I loved hearing him explain the thought process he used when designing each racecar he helped craft. the story follows Neweys life from college till recent. filled with anecdotes and funny moments, sad moments and ever in between. along the way I also learned the evolution of the F1 car from the 1970s to present
.
I knew hardly anything about F1 when I started the book. very enjoyable.

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  • Curtis
  • 15-01-20

Required reading for F1 fans!

Great story of an F1 legend.

I listened to it intently and could barely stop. Lots of detail on design, his life and some great insights into the politics behind F1.

Good performance in general with an excellent Nigel Mansell impression.

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  • Jonathon Anderson
  • 05-01-20

Any Formula One nerds dream.

Truly enjoyable on the nerdiest level. Super detailed explanations about all things aerodynamics and auto racing.