January 06, 2008

F1 Pr0n: Ferrari F2008!

Oh, baby...

It's that time of year again, when a young F1 fan's thoughts turn to sensuous curves, pert rears and cute noses... it's ROLLOUT SEASON!!!

As has become traditional of late, Ferrari was the first to bring their steed to the masses, debuting the F2008 today.  Click below for more glamour shots and some thoughts on the beast...

The most obvious difference between the F2007 and the F2008, at least from the side, is the  change in the shape of the "air scoop" above the cockpit.  It's longer and steeper on the F2008, whereas it looks like you could cut yourself on the 2007 version.  There's some alteration to the sidemolding of the cockpit as well, which I think was a FIA-mandated safety change.  They've shaved some thickness off the nose, too, looks like a shallower angle.  If you notice the Ferrari logo, it looks like a cutout has been added on the F2008, where the F2007 is smooth-sided.  I can only imagine that these changes are all for aero's sake, but I'll be darned if I can tell you how it'll improve anything.  The difference is probably measured in grams of downforce and could be better seen in an wind-tunnel anyway.

Or the person who did the original clay model sneezed as an inopportune time, one of the two.

The rear wing on the F2008 is sculpted at the front in comparison to the F2007.  If I remember correctly, that change actually occurred in the middle of the 2007 season.  The sidepods of the F2008 join to the body with an angle, as opposed to the swoop on the F2007... I think the older car is more graceful, but it's probably a better cooling solution now.  The bargeboards seem to be somewhat more restrained on the new version.  The front wing has a bigger notch on the '08 challenger, and while it's hard to see in this photo, the top plane seems to be thicker as well.  One surprise, though, is that there seems to be more bodywork cut away at the rear of the car (compare the black areas)... airflow, perhaps for improved cooling?  Or something else?  The way of F1 design is strange indeed.

Say what you want about Ferrari... they do build 'em purty.  It looks like the sidepod air holes are larger and more square than last year, though it's hard to tell without a good comparison photo.  The air scoop looks a lot like the McLaren's of a year or two ago... maybe Ferrari can use that as proof of McLaren spying via time-travel or something.

If you remember, McLaren's front wing bridged over the nose last year, while everybody else's connected to the nose directly.  It almost looks like Ferrari is splitting the difference here... it still connects to the nose, but maybe at a steeper angle?  The vent in the nose (aka the foot cooler) might be larger, as well.  (f1technical.net suggests that the nose is a copy of the 2007 Toyota's... if so, that means that SOMETHING from Toyota will have a chance as crossing the finish line first this year)

I love looking at F1 cars from the front... it always emphasizes the fact that they're so fragile-looking.  And they are, particularly in comparison to a NASCAR racer.  Who'd imagine that something that spindly could go 215mph without shaking itself to pieces?

If you wondered why one of the best race drivers in the world sometimes say they accidentally engage the pit limiter or something like that (like Lewis Hamilton in Brazil {allegedly} or Takuma Sato {twice in 2005}), here's why.  That steering wheel costs as much as some luxury cars, around $27000... and the Ferrari one is fairly simple.  Take a look at this page for a complex wheel, the 2006 BMW's (with annotations, so you can figure out what everything does).

Overall, the biggest difference between the F2008 and the F2007?  The driver number: 1.

Posted by: Wonderduck at 09:02 PM | Comments (5) | Add Comment
Post contains 662 words, total size 5 kb.


Guess that explains the pit limited mystery--oventimers.

You're absolutely right--Ferrari does, indeed, build purty cars.




Posted by: Mallory at January 07, 2008 07:47 AM (3sife)

2 È bella!

Is that first photo actually taken inside the factory? That's rare. For many years photos/film of the inside of the factory were not allowed.

First thing I noticed in the comparison is that she's definitely shorter in wheelbase and in overall height. They had a good base to work from, so we'll see what happens.

Posted by: madmike at January 07, 2008 11:00 AM (o+iiH)


I don't think the new car's shorter so much as the 2008 pics (both top and side) seem to be taken from farther away. The tires in the overhead shots look like completely different sizes.

Posted by: Will at January 07, 2008 03:02 PM (WnBa/)

4 Will's right, the two comparison photos are probably taken from different distances.  My main goal was to get the pictures to be 500px across, not to have the cars be to the same scale.  Sorry about that.

For what it's worth, I read somewhere (grandprix.com?) that this year's Ferrari is going to be HEAVIER than the F2007, but the enginerds think they've made it up on aero.  Take that as you will.

Posted by: Wonderduck at January 07, 2008 08:20 PM (AW3EJ)

5 Actually I was looking at the differences in size because I read somewhere that they had shortened the wheelbase of the new car "significantly" (according to said article).

Posted by: madmike at January 08, 2008 09:34 AM (xwTH1)

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