The Sauber F1 Team became the first outfit to show launch their next generation Grand Prix car as the Hinwil based outfit prepare to start their 25th season in Formula One.
In 2016, the Sauber F1 Team was sold to Longbow Finance S.A and looking ahead to the future for the team, CEO and Team Principal Monisha Keltenborn commented by saying:
Together with Longbow Finance S. A., we have great opportunites to be competitive again and to return to previous successes in Formula One. We want to position ourselves with a new approach, and we have already taken the first steps in order to build a solid foundation for the future.
Speaking about this season, Keltenborn commented by saying:
We clearly have to improve. “With the Sauber C36-Ferrerai we have a solid basis as well as the resources to further develop the Sauber C36-Ferrari through the season. This will be important to establish in mid-field.
The Sauber F1 Team have a new technical director with Jorg Zander joining the outfit and speaking about this year’s car he commented by saying:
The cars are becoming wider again, from 1.80 to 2 metres, the tyres are 25 % wider, the front and rear wings are becoming wider as well, plus the diffuser is being enlarged. In total, this means more downforce, more grip and, as a result, faster lap times.” Consequently, work on the concept of the new car was focused on reducing the drag coefficient (due to the wider tyres) to a minimum as well as achieving a significant weight reduction, for instance by means of the new roll structure. In certain areas of lightweight design the team went to the limits. The aero concept includes the optimisation of the front and rear wings and the underfloor. The radiator, the sidepods and the bodywork were designed to be as slim as possible. Clear progress was also achieved in terms of additional downforce. The key here is to keep downforce, which is generated via driving, and remain stable in various track sections. “We put greater emphasis on aerodynamic stability as opposed to maximising downforce.
Jorg Zander discussed the 2017 regulations saying:
Basically, big teams also have an advantage when it comes to major changes in the regulations. “but when the cards are reshuffled new opportunities always present themselves as well. The Sauber C36-Ferrari is wider and lower, with wider tyres making the car look more muscular than last year’s model, the C35. Practically just by looking at it, one can tell the speed the new car has increased as a result of more downforce and shorter braking distances – measured against lap time, not top speed – it is written all over its face. The width of the front tyres has increased from 245 to 305 mm, that of the rear tyres from 325 to 405 mm. Something that has not changed compared with 2016 is the fact that the wider tyres will be able to decide races as well when it comes to how they work and harmonise with the car’s setup and with respect to wear. “With the tyres one might be able to mask deficits and get development concepts to work better.
The Sauber F1 Team have signed Pascal Wehrlein to partner Marcus Ericsson this season following Felipe Nasr’s departure from the outfit. Winter testing gets underway next Monday 27th February at the Barcelona Circuit Du Catalunya.