Williams reveals first images of 2017 F1 car

2017 F1 season

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Williams has revealed the first images and video of its 2017 Formula One car, the FW40.

Williams FW40, 2017
The team has named the successor to last year’s FW38 to reflect their 40th anniversary.

The FW40 is the first car to appear which has been designed for the new 2017 regulations under which car widths have increased from 1,800mm to 2,000mm.

The darkened images reveal few details of the car. Some elements, such as its bargeboards, can be seen if the images are brightened. The front nose does not appear to be completely smooth where the suspension joins the car, suggesting the team is using a vent.

The team also published a video revealing further details of the car (below). This still image from the video which has been brightened shows the new-shape rear wing and enlarged diffuser:

Williams FW40 rear, 2017

The Mercedes-powered car will be driven by Felipe Massa and newcomer Lance Stroll.

Williams fell from third to fifth in the constructors’ championship last year and were beaten by fellow Mercedes customers Force India.

The FW40 will have an official launch on February 25th

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Williams FW40, 2017

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Keith Collantine
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78 comments on “Williams reveals first images of 2017 F1 car”

  1. While I do like the look of it, I can’t help but think Williams have been a bit conservative here. It just looks like a tweaked FW38…

    1. don think so @geemac, maybe that impression comes from the livery?

      Look at those sidepods, they are very different.

      The engine cover may resemble the fw38, but that comes from the shark fin, apart from that appear to be much more sculpted than before

      The nose looks similar, but if you look closely you can see that opening at the height of wheels, that surely is the air exit that come from the intake right at the front of the nose, it looks like a clever way to generate downforce right at the front of the car (if it works or not that is another question)

      I am surprised by the front-wing, does not look as complex as I expected, but this is just a render, so who knows, also it is difficult to analyse the details when you have black parts of bodywork in a black background.

      It does not seem to have the drama that everyone was talking about, but I think it looks cool, certainly better than last year’s.

      1. man, sorry for the typos

      2. At first I had the same reaction as you @geemac but when you look closely you see @johnmilk‘s point. The sidepods are very different, much more complex. I also love the new rear wing, it looks much better than the old, taller one!

        The front wing does look to be “simple” but it’s probably just the pre-season version.

        Anyway, I really don’t care how the cars look as long as we can have good racing, especially at the front!

        1. Perhaps I was a bit hasty @johnmilk and @gordess.

          A closer look at the lightened image does show that they are running an S-Duct for the first time and that they have done some good work sculpting the sidepods.

          I’m not expecting anything special from any of the teams front wings at this stage, their final “first race” wings will probably only break cover on the last day of the second test.

    2. You are right, but this is because this is just a render. I am sure Williams won’t show all the details of the car yet. I am confident the nose will look a bit different for example. The sidepods and bargeboards too.

    3. …with background engine notes from an FW35.

    4. @geemac Don’t panic yet. The images are a spoof of the 2017 regulations, honestly it makes no sense to release this images now. This car is not the one will see in Melbourne we all know that already but this one as you said looks just a sketch of 2017. I say this because it’s written out there that It’s been hinted that most cars will feature a massive shark fin, it’s also been rumoured that the area in front of the sidepods as a result of some added freedom of design is going to look outlandishly different and finally the aero details as such as front and rear wing profiles are still in development.

      1. petebaldwin (@)
        18th February 2017, 12:13

        @peartree – It makes sense to release images now – it’s the first “2017 car” we’ve seen so regardless of whether it looks like the actual car or not, it’ll get lots of press coverage which will keep their sponsors happy.

        1. @petebaldwin YEs in that sense yes, the livery is probably the only thing final in those cgi images.

  2. This is just a teaser mockup. The barge boards are all wrong. Williams just stirring a bit of hype!


    1. Fair comment. It’s exiting to see at least this…Been waiting for ages for just a glimpse of something…And we got it with the manor tester. But a car in full livery is better. But let’s wait till next week for full claification

  3. This is ugly. It still has that stupid thumb nose! And they did nothing creative with the livery I see.

    1. In my opinion they don’t need to do anything creative with the livery. It is one of the best looking and most distinctive in the paddock.

      1. Exactly.

        Everyone loves the Marlboro McLaren’s and they had basically the same livery for about 15 years.

        1. @geemac, it was really a Marlboro livery than a McLaren livery – Alfa Romeo ran the same livery from 1981 through to 1983 as McLaren did, making it quite difficult to distinguish the two cars apart at times.

        2. is it just me that thinks the marlboro livery on mclaren was awful?

          1. @marussi Aesthetically and from a purely objective perspective, yes everyone thinks it was not that great. It’s a great livery because many of us have it imprinted in our brains it is part of f1 and McLaren and that’s how it turns to a beautiful livery.

    2. The livery does it’s job for their sponsor, that is all that matters if they want that Martini cash.

      1. They’re clearly not even getting enough Martini cash to keep the lights on if the video is anything to go by!

    3. @ultimateuzair
      The “thumb nose” looks just fine, and does it’s job. This is a race car, not the new iPhone.

      Same with the livery. Don’t be so negativite.

  4. Glad it’s not orange!

  5. I’m predicting 9th place in the constructors for Williams.

  6. Again that ugly noses, is almost the same car wider to fit regulations of this year

    1. Would you rather they just threw out all the aero-dynamics to make a slow but ‘good looking’ car? The car looks the way it is because that is what Williams believes is the fastest possible shape within the rules.

      1. Usually the fastest cars are very nice looking.

        1. Yes, but which comes first?

          1. petebaldwin (@)
            18th February 2017, 12:16

            In this case, a computer generated image that will exclude any “clever bits” comes before the actual car.

  7. I hope the real thing has better texture mapping where the nosecone joins.

    1. @bookoi, I believe that’s not bad texturing but the S-duct.

      1. @gordess Ahh, that would make more sense. I think years of painting bad sim racing liveries has skewed my perception. :)

  8. Maybe it’s just the angle, maybe it’s not the real thing, I don’t know, but if F1 is after impressive, “aggressive” looks, that doesn’t really do it.

    1. I think it will look much better once we properly see it @strontium

      These do not give you the depth required to fully appreciate the size changes for example. When it reaches the track and it is in a real environment I’m sure it will look better

    2. The angle doesn’t help neither does the lighting. Or thats in last years livery. Delve a little deeper and it does look better, but this is just an impression the real thing will look better.

  9. The wings look nowhere near as extreme as they were being hyped up to be, I’m hoping that this is just a general impression, as it’s far from impressive at this point

    1. They’re really not, are they..? The front wing delta shape, especially. It’s actually barely noticeable. I barely noticed it on the Manor shots, either.

      1. You must have some vision problem then.

  10. All I’ve seen recently on certain Facebook F1 pages are fan drawn 2017 “concepts”. I’ve been trying to temper the casual fan’s overhype, because some of those concepts were pretty wild.

    And now, we have our first glimpse of a “real” 2017 contender, I have to admit, it’s quite underwhelming.

    It’s hard to take too many conclusions away from this, but what I notice is that those tyres don’t look that extreme when coupled with the new car width, and the rear wing is nowhere near as “extreme” as we were lead to believe it would be in appearance.

  11. That looks totally weird. Not at all sexy…

  12. BTW Williams tweeted that the official launch of the FW40 will be in the 25th of February

  13. Not as extreme as we might have thought(and expected) but not that bad either!The car is pretty familiar to the old one and what remains to be seen,is whether it will bring Williams to the top 4 or it will slip to midfiled.

  14. Please help remind me: why would the sidepods be more agressive this year? Not much has happened with regards to them, has there?

    1. The sidepods can be wider this year so more scope for extreme shapes? They could put more parts to the side so it cuts back sharper or slants to the floor at the back faster.

    2. The sidepods in Formula 1 have become shapeless blobs. There’s no chance for them looking aggressive these days with current regulations.

      1. “The sidepods in Formula 1 have become shapeless blobs.”

        huh? not sure if serious…

  15. I found IT rather sad that they used the V8 sound in the clip.

    1. @celebmir there are quite a few engine sounds in there, considering this is a car that celebrates 40 years of history I wouldn’t be surprise if those sounds were used to relive some of it.

      and the last engine sound that you can hear before the video changes to the williams martini logo is actually from the current ones

  16. What a huge disappointment that is.

    Same awful nose as last year. Seems as though the rules STILL hasn’t got rid of them. I saw a picture of this on Insta this morning and genuinely thought it was last year’s car, just twinned with an announcement that the new car will be released on the 25th, and skipped right past it.

    One can only hope other team’s cars look more of a step forward!

  17. Frankly this looks like the “mule cars” that were developed for Pirelli to simulate 2017 downforce levels.

  18. This is just a mock up so there’s surely more to come from them, but I didn’t expect the rear wing to be slanted like that. Like the rear wing of the Ferrari 2015 car they modified to fit the tyres, but I thought these wings would be straight.

    I suppose it’s only a minor thing and the rest of the car does look to be an improvement so far, particularly the sidepods and front wing.

  19. The view of the rear end is pretty sweet. Bringing fat tyres and 2m wide card is certainly ticking my nostalgia boxes. Personally, I think this I just a bit of a teaser for marketing purposes. If expect the car to look rather different come launch and the first race.

  20. What a beautiful f1 car!
    It has proportonality, refined lines & an aesthetic paint scheme which are a match for even the f2004.
    Wait until the testosterone gets pumping when it’s fired up and those extra aero gains sprout.

  21. Exciting times. These cars are going to look amazing in full light, fully revealed, let alone in daylight and on the track, let alone a flock of them racing in anger. The width alone and the bigger tires will do tons to the appearance of the grid. Much much better looking cars. Keep em coming.

  22. Michael Brown (@)
    17th February 2017, 14:04

    I actually hate these finger/thumb noses more than the platypus noses of 2012

    1. Whoa, let’s not remind ourselves of those monstrosities.

      That said, Mercedes have cantered to 3 world titles without any nasal appendages so you have to wonder why other teams keep bothering with it.

  23. McLaren may have been leaked…… https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-iNQdKkRdHQ

    If real, Me like!

    1. Hope it is real – looks a darn sight better than that Williams!

      1. Looks awesome, wider pods than the Williams l notice give it better balance in the looks department.
        Hopefully the new dimensions address the silly narrowness of the last few years.
        Fear the rear tyres may look a bit daft as they did in the mid 70s.
        I wish they would drop the billboard behind the driver.
        Overall, this looks fantastic

    2. that is the video that McLaren flagged as being fake. It is in the round up in the twitter section

      You can check the credits at the end of the video as well

      1. l sincerely hope your wrong

        1. Shame, it looks like your right

          1. Sorry for the disappointment

    3. Some sources say it’s made based of a foto, but i think we will see some features back on the McLaren.
      Notice the air slots untop of the nose in front of the driver… I wonder if we will see that back.

  24. Anybody think Williams will still keep their unique steering wheel? I’ve noticed that over the past few years, they have been the only team to not have their screen on the steering wheel. I personally think that Williams doing this makes the most sense. As the screen won’t be going upside down every time you turn your wheel! Also, if other teams have a flat spot on one of their front tyres, their steering wheel shakes like mad and it looks unreadable. At leased where the Williams have had their screen, these problems wouldn’t be there.

    I don’t see what problem people have with the noses. I thought that when they were there in 2014, on a lot of cars, they were ugly then, but I’ve always thought that it looks less ugly on the Williams than most other cars. Anybody remember Caterham and Toro Rosso? Those 2 especially looked hideous IMO. Last year, I actually started to not mind it being there at all on the Williams. After all, now the lotus colours have gone, the Williams is certainly my favorite looking car. I did like the Yellow on the Renaults last year but I really miss that black and gold!

    1. I always thought the Williams screen mounted to the cockpit made it look like a sat nav!

      1. That’s exactly why Kimi doesn’t drive for Williams – he knows where he’s going.

  25. I know this car is wider but it doesn’t look it, partly because of the wheelbase.

    1. I really wish they hadn’t made the cars longer. It really takes away from the good work they’ve done. They still have that limo style dimension. Such a shame.

  26. Roth Man (@rdotquestionmark)
    17th February 2017, 18:10

    Interesting that they’ve fitted a V8 N/A engine, very risky approach. Must admit I’m disappointed they didn’t save this till the launch, kinda spoilt it now!

  27. 2 things ruin the look for me:

    1) the twisted rear wing supports. If they were straight the look would be so much better and closer to pre-2009 rear wing.

    2) The nose-I’m baffled that in a year of change they still haven’t managed to eliminate the finger(note to say worse definitions) noses

    1. Spot on with both comments. I initially thought the leaning supports were for the mule cars, but it really does seem to be this way.

      The nose… Don’t get me started again. I’m genuinely gutted. I was so, so happy to hear they had done away with them, but i’m guessing there’s a loophole.

      1. l’m guessing but l bet if there weren’t rules for the nose we wouldn’t have this result?

    2. Personally love the twisted rear wing supports.

      1. Fudge Kobayashi (@)
        17th February 2017, 20:53

        The most disappointing thing for me is the sheer length of the thing and the size of that front wing. Here’s hoping to good looking cars in 2019 then *sigh*

  28. It might be my inexperience, but is that twisted/curved aero point on the floor behind the front wheel new?

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