Chassis : FW35
Engine : Renault RS27 – 2013
Williams was the last team to present its 2013 contester, the FW35, choosing to gain extra time to perfect the design of the new car but loose real track time as the new car missed the first pre session test. The car is an aggressive evolution of the FW34 with more than 80% of the parts to be new . It has an almost “invisible” rear end due to its literally tiny gearbox. Williams started a tiny gearbox program two seasons ago and it is really ridiculous to see rivals not to try a similar project. Apart from the above , the car features radical front brake system with blown axle, Coanda channeled exhausts with a vane on top which was later considered illegal, a high nose with longitudinal vanes on sides and oversized curved front wing pillars.
Winter testing updates :
At Jerez Williams tested with two FW34 hybrid car versions , one with a modesty panel and one without . Both versions carried parts from the new FW35 .
At second Barcelona test the Mc Larenish Coanda exhausts were dropped in favor of ramp exhausts and tunneled sidepods like the ones Red Bull and Lotus have . Revised blown front brakes also put under test .
Aerodynamic performance : average but promising
Speed :. Not on top but could be in certain circumstances
Tyres management : well but work need to be done
Reliability : questionable
Despite the fact that FIA attempted to discourage teams from exploiting the nose fairing and gaining aero advantage over it, many teams bypassed the regulations spirit and developed elegant structures both to gain improved airflow over the nose and keep the weight penalty due to the added fairing as low as possible . To be honest this was something more than expected as many changes caused the opposite effect than the wanted one, with the recent ban of the blown diffuser to be the best example. The only team which does not need a fairing is Marussia because of its low chassis .
Ferrari, Mc Laren, Force India, Williams and Toro Rosso followed a conservative pattern as shown in the illustration below
Sauber developed a unique “ Π ” shaped fairing to create a deep channel on top of the nose, separating the air stream flowing over the nose with the one flowing at sides .
Red Bull’s dwarf fairing is an outcome of the desire to limit the fairing dimensions to the minimum required for opted aero efficiency so as to keep the extra weight as low as possible .
Mercedes evolved further last season arched nose . Instead of being flat at the top it has an intense arched shape and a more smooth bulkhead height transition . This is to reduce drag by diverting the air flowing above the nose tip towards the nose sides while the main flow is channeled smoothly over the bulkhead , all aiming lower drag production . The optical result of this pattern resembles to a duck nose .
Finally Caterham and Lotus rejected the possibility of fixing a weight costly fairing and instead developed a sculpted chassis on top, thus forming a smoother airpath for drag cut . However Caterham features a deeper and a more obvious sculpted area than Lotus does .
It is of high possibility to see teams developing further their initial idea or even coping rivals patterns . It is good to remember that the nose fairing, as all new designs, needs to be examined and studied further , unless FIA decides to make regulations even stricter .
- 2013 season – A goodbye to stepped noses (formula1techandart.wordpress.com)