Although much remains the same between the 2020 and 2021 evolutions of the F1 cars, Ferrari has introduced as many new parts as possible for the new season.
The Scuderia posted their worst result in over 40 years with a P6 finish in the 2020 Constructors’ Championship and this year is all about taking a step in the right direction again towards the sharp end of the grid.
After unveiling the new SF21 to world on Wednesday afternoon, key members of the Ferrari team explained what is different about their 2021 challenger and how they hope it will lead to improved fortunes going forward.
“When we began the SF21 project, our first task was to identify which area of the car we should focus on in order to achieve a radical change,” said Enrico Cardile, head of chassis.
“We opted for the rear end, designing a new gearbox and new suspension system. This, in addition to the efforts of our power unit colleagues has led to a much tighter rear end.
“We also looked at the cooling system, increasing the effectiveness of the central radiator and designed the body with more ‘downwashing’.
“Aerodynamics was one of the areas affected by the regulation changes aimed at reducing the ability to generate vertical load, in order not to put too great a strain on the tyres.
“That’s why, as we began developing the car’s aerodynamics, we set ourselves two goals: recovering more aerodynamic downforce than was lost through the regulations and reducing drag.
“Because of the regulations, less drastic changes were possible at the front end of the car.
“So, we developed a new front wing which works in conjunction with a new concept nose, but the chassis itself and the suspension is off last year’s SF1000.”
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Another obvious weakness was the Ferrari engine, but a brand new power unit has been built for 2021 and the Scuderia have already seen data which suggests they have managed to build an improved package.
“As engine engineers, last season on track produced a clear picture of where we were and that was our starting point,” Head of Power Unit, Enrico Gualtieri, added.
“It was that awareness, combined with our determination, our skills and those of our partners that led to the creation of the 065/6 power unit for the 2021 season.
“We adopted a systematic approach, with all departments – design, simulation, development, track – working together to find every opportunity for improvement.
“Along with our colleagues on the chassis side, we worked a lot on the layout of the power unit, to make the overall design of the car as efficient as possible.
“With the internal combustion engine, we focused on increasing its level of thermal efficiency, in conjunction with our partner Shell and this has produced an improvement in lap time that we estimate at over one tenth of a second.
“We are also carrying out further development on the hybrid system and the electronics, in order to revise and optimise all components. All this in a season in which power unit test bench time has been reduced still further.”