Ferrari SF16-H launch, 2016

New Ferrari and McLaren to debut today

F1 Fanatic Round-up

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In the round-up: One will be red and the other might be orange – Ferrari and McLaren unveil their new racers today.

F1 Fanatic at 2017 pre-season testing

Marcus Ericsson, Sauber C36, Circuit de Catalunya, 2017
We get to see the cars in action next week
It’s been a hectic 48 hours back and forth from the launches of the new Force India and Mercedes. But the excitement will go up several notches next week as the cars hit the track in anger for the first time in pre-season testing.

All ten teams will be in action with their new cars at the Circuit de Catalunya. F1 Fanatic will be there on every day of the test to bring you live lap-by-lap updates, pictures of the dramatic new cars and the first word from the drivers on how Formula One’s latest rules overhaul is going to change the sport.

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Comment of the day

Mercedes W08, Silverstone, 2017
New cars: Too long?
The height and width of F1 cars have been limited for many years. Is it time length was too?

From most angles 2017’s cars look wonderful, but in profile they are truly too long.

The bit from the airbox to the rear wheels gives it a naked, empty sort of look.

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On this day in F1

Happy birthday to two-times world champion Alain Prost who is 62 today.

Author information

Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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48 comments on “New Ferrari and McLaren to debut today”

  1. I can’t wait to see what Ferrari and McLaren have come up with.

    My most anticipated launches after Redbull.

  2. I’m pretty sure it was the TAG engine that failed on the Torro Rosso, not the Renault. ;)

    1. Good point.

    2. Roth Man (@rdotquestionmark)
      24th February 2017, 6:22

      😂 Just get a new battery fitted up the market and it’ll be fine.

      1. ExcitedAbout17
        24th February 2017, 8:41

        And I thought all Tag Heuers were self winding ;)

    3. Except they had Ferrari engines…’re bad.

  3. The thing about the look is about the proportions. With the cars getting wider and longer, it’s not that length is too big compared with the width, it’s that the tires, or the wheels to be more precise, have remained the same since the time of the refueling. Back in those days cars were much smaller because they didn’t have to carry as much fuel. Now we have cars that first became longer due to refueling, and then became wider this year, and yet, the wheels have just barely changed wit the slightly wider tires this year.
    We need the wheel which is bigger as a whole, in order to make the it the perfect size in relation to the car, because, as I’ve said in the opening, it’s all about the proportions.

    1. Exactly. The cars would look incredible with 18-20 inch wheels. Though they might also look a bit cartoonish, too, given the driver’s helmet would still be in there, looking puny.

  4. Todd (@braketurnaccelerate)
    24th February 2017, 0:49

    The cars now are simply way, way too long. They look very disproportionate now. The teams are doing it for packaging reasons, I get that. So it’s going to take some action from the FIA to set a maximum wheelbase. Otherwise, we’ll have cars that look like Minks.

    1. ExcitedAbout17
      24th February 2017, 8:45

      Of all the things that are wrong in F1, we start complaining about car length??
      I don’t even get it, to me they look long an sleek due to the low rear wing.

  5. I don’t always had the money to support but I’ll be sure to do so this year, thanks Keith.

    I think the cars are a bit long, the black paint on the Mercedes I think is their way of saying “this is where it should end”.

    Meanwhile that nose of the Force India is gonna make me laugh all year if they keep it. It’s like they didn’t get the memo or something.

    1. I just quickly photoshopped that Mercedes black paint idea together, and I’m not actually sure I like the look of it

      Bit alien, maybe too short…

      1. That’s perfect!

      2. What black paint idea, I don’t see any difference. What am I meant to be looking at.

      3. Much much better! The driver’s head should not be closer to the front than the rear. This is perfectly balanced!

        1. Look up liger js19!

          1. Definitly don’t want to crash in that car.

      4. Looks too short to me now, maybe somewhere in between?

      5. It sure makes that car look like a power package, a rocket to go Tristan!

      6. So much better..

      7. Racecar is racecar backwards
        24th February 2017, 15:35

        I always think the part just behind the air box looks too long

  6. They will surely be running shorter wheelbase versions for Monaco, right? Or introduce 4 wheel steering setups? Or a ramp to bypass Lowes?

  7. What time are the McLaren and Ferrari launches?

    1. @mashiat

      McLaren – 11:00 GMT you can see it here:

      Ferrari – 8:45 GMT don’t know where you can watch it unfortunately

        1. ExcitedAbout17
          24th February 2017, 8:49

          correct, it will be streamed via that link! ( for the Italian version).

  8. Fudge Kobayashi (@)
    24th February 2017, 2:08

    I always thought a great way to regulate the size and shape of a car through regulations would be a set amount of material volume per car, which could be used either to create a long wheelbase but more simplistic car OR a shorter car with more aero (as the aero must be manufactured of the same material volume). That could give some great variety up and down the field AND hopefully shorten the cars as teams opt for a more aero led approach.

    1. I like that!

  9. Couldn’t agree more with the cotd. At first when I looked at these new cars I thought I liked them, but something seemed a little off. The more I look at them the more I dislike them, and the reason is they are too long. They honestly look silly being so long, look at them straight from the front and they look great, get any sort of glimpse at a side profile and its like what happend. I cant really even tell that the cars are wider, they just look bigger overall.

    They should have kept more from the 14-16 cars, lower the rear wing, bolt on the big tires and be done. Should have never had swept wings (they make the car look longer, especially the front), should have outlawed ugly noses.

  10. Is it just me or does Valtteri Bottas eyes look like Kimi Raikkonen in that picture?

    1. OmarRoncal - Go Seb!!! (@)
      24th February 2017, 3:56

      Just you @macca

    2. @macca Don’t they always

  11. The more you look at it the more it looks ridiculously long. Everything else looks great though.

  12. Compensating for the lack of 2 Manors on the grid by increasing the length of the other 20!

  13. Thank you for COTD Keith. Not related, but I became a supporter ;-)

    1. thanks for writing it @hahostolze :-)

  14. Just a minor point but didnt Alain Prost win 4 world titles (1985, 1986, 1989, 1993)?

  15. The amount of things that I have seen people complain about in this website (shark fins (and I was one of them here), noses, humps, bumps, wings, moustaches, liveries) is amazing, now we move on to the length of the car? Well, ok then.

    BTW, 5 launches so far, and still waiting on a COTD focused on a positive, but hey, it wouldn’t be the F1 we know if we weren’t complaining about it

    1. I guess it’s a sign of not having anything else ot complain of with the Mercedes @johnmilk, even the livery is a tad better than what they had, although one could make a fair argument about dull colours for that, those nice lines flowng over it are at least an improvement

      1. maybe that is the case @bascb but people were expecting something different from the “silver arrows”? Surely not

        I said yesterday in someones comment, I bet the Ferrari will be red, and the redbull blue with a red bovine headbutting a yellow dot

        1. All with you there @johnmilk. The good thing of the rules change has certainly been the spotting of interesting new bits teams come up with and the Mercedes has so far done as I sort of expected (and no doubt many hoped to avoid) in looking like they have nailed it.

          About the colours, I would love Ferrari to adapt the blood red they had decades ago instead of the ligher reds they have been using since the mid 90′, and heck we might even be pleasantly surprised by McLaren bringing a great livery, so who am I to complain that MErcedes and Red Bull etc are sticking with theirs (even if yes, it does look meh)

  16. That picture of the Mercedes above, my goodness, these cars look ridiculous, like they should hook up ten hopper cars and a caboose to the Mercedes locomotive. I don’t know why F1 continues to get it wrong when they had it so right fifty years ago, and forty, thirty and twenty years ago as well.

  17. “Happy birthday to two-times world champion Alain Prost who is 62 today”

    Poor Alain seems to have lost some of his titles. He should check down the back of the sofa.

  18. Happy birthday to Pedro Martínez de la Rosa too

  19. With regard to COTD, I think all 2017 cars look horrible so far. Not as bad as let’s say LMP1 cars, but certainly not attractive at all. And it’s not just the stretched profile.

    -the front wing was narrower, single profile and with much reduced size of the end plates;
    -all the winglets, vanes and barge boards between the front axle and the side pods were removed;
    -all the floor was cut away were there is no bodywork above it

    then maybe they would look a bit like sleek race cars again.

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