Formula One looks set to prevent the cars of 2013 from being as ‘ugly’ as this season’s field.
Pirelli chief Paul Hembery recently called the 2012 generation, mainly featuring an awkward ‘step’ between the front of the monocoque and the nose, as “pig ugly”. The odd look is the result of a compromise reached after the FIA decided to lower the tip of the nose in the name of safety.
It emerges that it was Red Bull – whose Adrian Newey pioneered the high chassis underside philosophy – who pushed for the monocoque height to remain the same as 2011, ostensibly so that small teams like sister squad Toro Rosso did not have to come up with entirely new monocoque and front suspension designs.
World champion Sebastian Vettel admits that the 2012 outcome “doesn’t look that nice”. But he told Britain’s Sun newspaper: “For next year’s cars, the steps will be gone.”
Former grand prix driver Christian Danner said the current solution is “ghastly”. “I think it will be fixed for next year,” he told Austrian television Servus TV.
Agreed Nick Heidfeld: “Yes, I am sure the FIA will make a few changes next year so there’s not such a huge hump. On the other hand, it’s like a few years ago when the rear and front wings were changed; it doesn’t look quite so bad once you get used to it.
“Of course, you’d always prefer something that looks nicer.”