Sauber unveil slimmer sidepods, new drivers

Sat Feb 2, 2013 9:28am EST
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HINWIL, Switzerland (Reuters) - Sauber unveiled a new-look car with slimmer sidepods and two new drivers on Saturday but declined to say whether they could improve on last year's sixth place in the constructors' championship.

The new car, the Sauber C32-Ferrari, is visually very different from its predecessor, boasting a smooth, slightly downward-sloping nose section and much slimmer sidepods, Sauber said.

"The C31 was an extremely competitive car with many strengths," chief designer Matt Morris told an audience at the unveiling on an industrial estate near Zurich. "Our aim was to further improve these strengths and eliminate its few weaknesses."

The sidepods, which give the car a distinctive look, were the major change.

"The airflow in this area has a major influence over everything that happens at the rear of the car," said Morris,

Morris said the tire management had also been improved and the overall weight had been reduced.

"Our car looked after its tires very well during races last year," said Morris. "However, we had problems now and again when it came to getting the maximum out of them in qualifying. We've looked at this phenomenon closely and made the required adjustments."

The reduced weight had allowed a better distribution of the ballast, while retaining its structural requirements and mechanical setup flexibility.

"My colleagues have done an excellent job here, and we have even exceeded our original targets", said Morris.   Continued...

Sauber Formula One team principal Monisha Kaltenborn (C) poses with F1 drivers Nico Hulkenberg (L) of Germany and Esteban Gutierrez of Mexico after unveiling the C32-Ferrari car at the company's headquarters in Hinwil, east of Zurich February 2, 2013. REUTERS/Michael Buholzer