Ferrari launches the F2012 challenger

Scuderia Ferrari unveiled their new car, the F2012, in Maranello with the team hopes it will return to world championship-winning glory.

After being forced to cancel its launch ceremony because of heavy snow at the team’s base, the Scuderia published the first set of images of the new F2012 on its official website instead.

Having promised a more radical approach with its car that it has had in recent seasons, the new Ferrari is the result of a big effort at the factory under the guidance of new technical director Pat Fry.

That distinctive nose design as seen on the Caterham CT01 and Force India VJM05 makes an appearance and first impressions are the new Ferrari is not a looker.

Hopefully the F2012 will lead Fernando Alonso to championship glory this season, with the Spaniard only taking a single win in 2011, while team-mate Felipe Massa never finished higher than fifth.

“The main changes when compared to 2011 concern the height of the front section of the chassis, the position of the exhaust pipes and the mapping for the electronic engine management,” said a statement released by the team.

“Practically every area of the car has been fundamentally revised, starting with the suspension layout: both the front and rear feature pull-rods, aimed at favouring aerodynamic performance and lowering the centre of gravity.

“The front wing is derived from the one introduced on the 150° Italia in the final part of its racing life and has been evolved from there. Further evolutions are planned in this area for the opening races of the season.

“The nose has a step in it that is not aesthetically pleasing: with the requirement from the regulations to lower the front part, this was a way of raising the bottom part of the chassis as much as possible for aerodynamic reasons. The sides have been redesigned, through modifications to the side impact structures, the repositioning of the radiators and revisions to all aerodynamic elements.

“The lower part of the rear of the car is much narrower and more tapered, a feature achieved partly through a new gearbox casing and a relocation of some mechanical components. In recent years, the area of exhausts has been crucial in terms of car performance and much effort was expended on this front, based on changes to the regulations introduced this year. The rear wing is conceptually similar to the one used in 2011, but every detail of it has been revised and it is now more efficient.

“Naturally, it is still fitted with DRS (a drag reduction system,) which is operated hydraulically. The front and rear air intakes for the brakes have been redesigned and work was carried out in collaboration with Brembo to optimise the braking system.”

Hopefully all that hard work in the wind tunnel and R&D will pay off, but it is not clear if the team will be able to complete any mileage prior to the first official test with the F2012 at Jerez in Spain next week due to the heavy snow.

7 thoughts to “Ferrari launches the F2012 challenger”

  1. Ferrari expects its 2012 Formula 1 car to be winning races from the start of the new season, the team revealed at the launch of its F2012 racer on Friday.

    Team boss Stefano Domenicali said that he believes the changes made behind the scenes at Maranello should yield instant results, following a tough 2011 season for Ferrari.

    “I am sure our car will be winning right from the beginning,” he said. “We have learned many lessons from the past, and taken some difficult decisions. But I am sure all our efforts will be represented with this car.”

    The new Ferrari has some extreme elements to its appearance, including a very aggressive step in the nose of the car due to rule changes for this year restricting the height of the nose. Domenicali made reference to the new car having “many novelties” but added that it was not a complete overhaul compared to last year’s machine.

    “From a technical point of view, we have many novelties in terms of mechanics and also the shape of the car,” he said.

    “[But] we wanted some continuity here, and hopefully we will reach the right performance. We have only 12 days to work on the car and achieve reliability, and also test the new tyres that have been given to us by Pirelli.”

    Domenicali also paid tribute to his driver line-up of Fernando Alonso and Felipe Massa, while Ferrari also revealed that its major sponsorship deal with Santander has extended until the end of 2017.

    “I am sure our team will deliver a great effort,” he said. For Fernando I don’t have to add anything about his skill. In a difficult time last year he extended his relationship with us for many years, so this shows his responsibility.

    “Felipe has been here 10 seasons in F1, always with a Ferrari [engine], always with us. A great, great talent and I am sure this year after a difficult season he will show his great value for himself and the whole team.”


  2. After missing out on the title last year, Ferrari boss Luca di Montezemolo is quite upbeat on the team’s championship chances with new F2012. has the story.

    Ferrari president Luca di Montezemolo is confident his team has all it needs to win the world championship once again.

    After unveiling its aggressive-looking F2012 at Maranello on Friday, di Montezemolo said in a video message that he was full of confidence that the efforts put in by his staff would be rewarded.

    “We want to win, and we want to have right conditions like we had in the past,” said di Montezemolo. “We have all the ingredients for a perfect recipe.

    “Stefano [Domenicali, team principal] has been working so hard to get the car ready and get the team ready to improve organisation in the company. These changes are important and give us the possibility to have a highly competitive team.”

    Ferrari undertook a technical reshuffle last year, with Pat Fry stepping up to the role of technical director following the departure of Aldo Costa.

    The outfit vowed to be more extreme with its car than it had been in the past, and di Montezemolo was hopeful that any disputes over teams pushing the boundaries of the regulations would not overshadow the campaign.

    “Everything has been improved, and I am sure we will be rewarded,” he said. “Our fans and supporters want to see us back to great glory. I am sure in the forthcoming season the regulations will have to be trusted in a transparent way, and we trust the FIA to view these regulations with the right spirit.”

    Ferrari has also received good news on the commercial front too with an extension of its sponsorship deal with banking giants Santander until the end of 2017.

  3. Fernando Alonso is sure Ferrari will be strong during the 2012 season as the Maranello squad unveiled its 2012 car on Friday.

    Alonso won just one race in the 2011 season in a disappointing year for the Italian team, which is aiming to return to championship-winning ways this year.

    Two-time champion Alonso is upbeat about his prospects for the season ahead after the launch of the F2012 car.

    “It looks very different from what we have seen in the last two years,” said Alonso about the car, which features a radical platypus-style nose similar to that used by Caterham.

    “My third season at Ferrari and I am going to start with the same strength and determination. I want to do great.

    “Of course it will be quite competitive for the whole season, but we want to see red cars on the podium. We start next week in Jerez and we keep working together. I am sure we will do well this year.”

    He added: “I believe in the skills we have here in Ferrari. We have two months to get ready before the first competition. We have to fight for the title and try and get as many points as possible. We really want to be right at the top of the ranking.

    “We have to be as consistent and resolute as possible and I am sure, really, really sure we will be able to get great targets and great responsibility for driving for Ferrari.”

    Team-mate Felipe Massa is also optimistic Ferrari will be strong from the start of the season with the new car, which he labelled as “really aggressive”.

    “Let me tell you that it looks really, really aggressive,” said Massa. “This was part of my dreams. I know there was quite a lot of brainstorming when it comes to the new car. We always wanted to develop new models so I am impressed with the new car.

    “We start in a few days and I am sure the championship will be stunning and very competitive.”

    The Brazilian, which is facing a crucial year in order to secure his future in the team, said he was feeling very positive ahead of the start of the season.

    “It is going to be an important year for me and whole team, 2012, this is going to be the victory year,” he said. “We want to fight to get the championship back. I want to be believe in my skills and our car and this is the right thing to do.

    “We want to see Ferrari winning as often as possible. Here I feel a strength, I’m focused on winning. There’s plenty of positive things in my head and I want to start in the right way and get to the end of the championship in a better way.”


  4. The F2012 has caused many fans and experts to voice their views on the car’s distinctive nose. Though Ferrari chief designer Nikolas Tombazis defends the term ‘ugly’ on the team’s new Formula One car. has the story.

    Ferrari chief designer Nikolas Tombazis has defended the look of the new Ferrari amid widespread comments that its stepped nose makes the F2012 ‘ugly’.

    The new regulations for 2012 that force the front section of the nose to be low down – while teams desire the chassis section to be higher up – has led to a number of outfits featuring dramatic step changes along that area of the car.

    Ferrari’s solution on the F2012 is the most extreme seen so far, but Tombazis does not agree with comments that the new car does not look good.

    “There have been some rumours saying that this car is ugly and I have to confess that I am not objective on that, as I don’t share that opinion,” said Tombazis in a video interview broadcast on Ferrari’s website.

    “For me I have got used to the bump on the nose. I think the rest of the car has been the fruit of a lot of detail work.

    “Ultimately, as far as I am concerned, an ugly car is one that doesn’t win and a beautiful car is one that does win. So, for now, I want to believe it is a beautiful car and we will have to review that after the first few races.”

    Tombazis has promised that the Ferrari is also likely to feature a lot of upgrades before the opening race in Melbourne, with a particular focus being made in pre-season testing of defining its exhaust configuration.

    “This car is still destined to change quite a lot before the first race,” he said. “We have been working in the wind tunnel and the design office on aerodynamic upgrades of the car – but we also have some very important experiments we want to carry out in the first tests so we can finalise the first race configuration.”

    Team boss Stefano Domenicali said he was unfazed by the look of the car as long as it’s competitive.

    “Actually it is not really so pretty from my personal perspective but this is a value that doesn’t count in F1. These kind of choices come from technical and regulation constraints, and the choice is to try and maximise the performance of the car.

    “As our chairman has already said, [whether] it is ugly or very nice doesn’t count a lot. The most important thing is if the car performs.”

  5. Ferrari has confessed to taking more risks with this year’s car than previous cars, after unveiling a fairly aggressive F2012 at Maranello on Friday.

    Although the most commented-on feature is its stepped nose, the most radical feature is that it is the first car in Formula 1 since Minardi in 2001 to feature front pull-rod suspension.

    Furthermore, the team has worked hard on its packaging at the sidepods and the rear of the car and try and make the aerodynamic gains it thinks it needs to get ahead of Red Bull Racing.

    Technical director Pat Fry confirmed that Ferrari had deliberately decided on an aggressive approach for this year’s car – and had not been afraid of pushing the boundaries.

    “A lot of people have said a lot of things, and it is a bit of a step away from where we have been,” he told the official Ferrari website. “Certainly we have taken a few more risks on the basic car layout and things like that, but all in all everyone has done a good job.

    “But we need to knuckle down and start pushing for the upgrades for the first race and through the year.”

    Ferrari is planning a major development package to be introduced for the final test at Barcelona in March, as well as further improvements for the first race in Australia.

    The F2012 has very little carry over from last year’s car, and there are some big philosophical changes in the design approach.

    Chief designer Nikolas Tombazis said the team had built on lessons of last year, as well as coming up with new ideas.

    “The front wing is evolution of the wing that we introduced in the last races of last season,” he explained. “We introduced it there to have some initial lessons about this topic. We understood quite a lot and had further developments, and there will be further developments for the third test and before the first race of the season.

    “The nose has an ungainly shape on the top, and that is the result of the regulation that requires us to have the nose quite low but the dynamic desire to have the lower part of chassis as high as possible. Even though it is not aesthetically pleasing, we believe it is the most efficient aerodynamic solution for that area of the car.

    “One of the innovations of the car is the front suspension. For mainly aerodynamic reasons, we have selected a pull rod solution. It took us quite a lot of work from the structural and design offices and vehicle dynamics department to regain all the mechanical characteristics we wanted the suspension to have.

    “I believe we have achieved that, but we also think we have found an aerodynamic advantage from this solution.”

    Ferrari has also worked on a different sidepod philosophy to improve the aerodynamic benefits of the turning vanes. The rear of the car is also tighter, and the gearbox package made narrower.

    The team has also abandoned its push-rod rear suspension configuration in favour of the pull-rod concept favoured by a number of rival outfits.


  6. Two-time world champion Fernando Alonso was glad that the Ferrari team went for a radical 2012 Formula One car for this season. has the story.

    Fernando Alonso says he completely backs Ferrari’s decision to produce a radical 2012 Formula 1 design, and argued that the F2012 can still be considered beautiful.

    Ferrari’s 2012 contender – launched in Maranello on Friday – features a dramatic step in its nose, pull-rod front suspension, and major aerodynamic and packaging changes over its predecessor.

    Alonso said he had been excited by the unusual design from the outset – and was pleased that Ferrari was doing something different.

    “With the new car the first feeling was very good from the beginning,” he said in a video interview released by Ferrari.

    “I like the shape, the creative shape that we see in this new car. I think when a car surprises you from the first look, it’s always a positive thing and I quite like the car. Hopefully it’s fast.”

    Alonso also defended the F2012’s aesthetics.

    “I like the innovative ideas that the car has,” he said.

    “I think all Ferraris are beautiful cars. I don’t remember any Ferrari that is ugly or any Ferrari that you don’t like. The red colour and the passion of each car that Ferrari does make the car beautiful anyway.”

    Alonso’s team-mate Felipe Massa said he was also pleased that Ferrari was exploring different design directions to its rivals.

    “It’s a very aggressive car. Different,” said Massa. “I’m very enthusiastic that we’re going to have a different car and a car where we go to a different direction in terms of development.

    “We still need to get used to this nose, which is very strange due to the new rules. But apart from the nose the car is very aggressive and very nice and I hope we’re going to see a very competitive car from the beginning to the end.”

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