In a rushed week of launches and unveilings, all but one of the 2013 Formula 1 cars have now been revealed. We can now look into the detail of what this new series of designs looks like and what makes them tick.
As became evident when the major teams launched their cars, everybody's design teams are coming up with similar ideas, with nose, sidepod and suspension solutions focusing on just one or two variations.
This is certainly the case when we round up the teams outside the top five, and their approaches to the season's big ideas, such as modesty panels and Coanda exhausts.
Force India VJM06
Having completed a major redesign for the 2012 car, Force India has had to engineer another big set of changes into the new VJM06.
With the focus on suspension development to cope with the new Pirelli tyres and exhaust development to gain more downforce, the team effectively has an all-new car.
The most obvious change is with the nose, which is similar to its 2010/11 designs, by having a chin under the surface to alter the airflow back along the car. The nose also sports a modesty panel to cover its step.
The biggest change is an all-new monocoque, which repositions the front suspension mountings and also incorporates a new rollhoop, with a small inlet below it for KERS cooling.
Flanking the tub are new sidepods. Last year's car had an aggressive undercut along the sidepods, and this year's shape is more subtle.
In 2012 Force India was one of the first teams to copy McLaren's semi-Coanda exhaust solution, and work completed in the later stages of last season was focused on improving this area. So although externally similar, more diffuser performance has been extracted from blowing the exhausts along it.
By taking the Mercedes engine/KERS and McLaren gearbox, Force India's rear end is largely already designed. But it has some freedom with the rear suspension mountings and has followed McLaren's lead with a high rear wishbone. This covers the driveshaft and frees up flow towards the diffuser, both aiding aero performance.
One small detail at the rear of the car is the Y75 winglet ('Monkey seat'). This is neatly cascaded with the shape of the beam wing. This winglet helps join up the flows between the diffuser, beam wing and top rear wing. Sitting in a small 15cm window in the rear wing regulations, it's quite a powerful tool for managing the flow at the back of the car.
As its 2012 car drew so many positive comments from fellow designers, there were high expectations for Sauber's C32. When the car was unveiled in Zurich at the weekend it didn't disappoint.
While the elegant nose grabs attention, it's the sidepod philosophy that will be drawing the other designers' attention.
Sauber employed a clever slot and duct arrangement inside the 2012 car's stepped nose to offset aero problems. A slot under the nose ducted air up and out of a rear facing slot at the back of the nosecone. This cleaned up the airflow above and below the nose.
This solution has been kept for 2013 and the nose step gains a neat modesty panel with two ridges along its edges to guide air up over the nose.
In another method to guide better airflow to the back of the car and especially over the exhaust outlets, Sauber has dramatically slimmed the front of the sidepods.
The narrow inlet allows unobstructed airflow to pass directly over the exhaust outlet. This helps divert the exhaust gasses to the diffuser for more downforce.
If this solution works, then other teams will face a big redesign to copy the narrow inlets and the crash structures that are formed within them.
Unlike last year's sidepods - which sported a full Coanda ramp to guide the exhaust to the diffuser's edge - the new car has McLaren-style shorter exhaust channels. This opens up the coke bottle area of the car for far better airflow over the diffuser.
Like Force India, Sauber uses a customer gearbox, in this case from Ferrari, so the team is partly obliged to follow similar rear suspension geometry. Thus the lower wishbone is also high mounted and covers the driveshaft for aero efficiency.
Toro Rosso STR8
Underlining the fact that Toro Rosso now has its own design team, its recent run of cars has followed its own design path, away from sister team Red Bull.
That design group is now led by ex-Force India/Sauber man James Key. His approach has been to make the car more flexible to set up with a wider window in which it will perform, a theory that achieved good results at Key's previous teams.
Thus the new car has heavily revised suspension, but other areas have also been changed. Most notable are the sidepods, where Toro Rosso had run deeply undercut versions for two years, but now has a more conventional undercut shape. The semi-Coanda exhaust outlets remain fitted toward the rear.
On the very front of the STR8, the nose remains very high and flat, but now wears a modesty panel. Unique to Toro Rosso, this is a removable panel secured with small fasteners.
Another stand-out feature at the front of the car are the brake ducts, which feature a scoopless design, the inlet being 'hidden' between the tyre and protruding vane. This leaves the outer brake duct surface clear of ductwork for better aero performance.
As the team has restructured with Mark Smith and John Iley taking over the technical helm from Mike Gascoyne, it has also been hard at work bringing the car up to a contemporary specification.
Even during the 2012 season work was being done on the little details to make the CT01 better, such as panel fit and thicknesses. So it's not surprising that the basic layout of the car has not changed much over the winter.
Unveiled on the eve of testing, the CT03 is similar car to CT01 (the CT02 is a road car project), as it retains a stepped nose and V-shape at the front of the chassis. One has to look very closely to see obvious differences, evident mainly in the way the splitter area merges into the sidepods.
Last year Silverstone brought the team's upgrade to Coanda exhausts, which followed the semi-Coanda layout, despite a Red Bull-style tunnel set-up being briefly tested.
The new car retains similar exhaust outlets, but the detail hides a potential legality issue. Inside the channel around the exhaust outlet is a vane. This vane is below the axis of the tailpipe and therefore is legal. However, technical directives were issued early last year aimed at preventing teams ducting exhaust flows, and these may force the team to remove the vane.
Running the Renault engine mated to a Red Bull gearbox, Caterham has found a neat rear end solution. Its Y75 winglet, or monkey seat, sprouts from an arched support with a solution akin to the mounting Williams used last year.
With so much visual carry-over from 2012, the team expects to bring a substantial aero upgrade package to the Spanish Grand Prix in May.
Since its inception as Virgin in 2010, Marussia has always followed its own design path, and not just in its former all-CFD approach, but in the general layout and shape of the car.
Now Marussia has a new design team and access to McLaren's technical resources, but the car remains down its own conceptual avenue. Revealed at the first test, the Marussia MR02 is a bold design with its signature low nose and rounded rear end.
Having never followed the high-nose concept, the team's research in the windtunnel found more gains from the low nose with a bulged 'chin' beneath it. This was incorporated into the 2012 Silverstone upgrade package and forms the basis for this car. So the MR02 has both its nose and the front of the chassis lower than on any other '13 car. This approach may pay dividends for '14 when the chassis and nose have to be lower.
Like most teams, the MR02 uses its exhaust to blow the diffuser through a short bulged channel, which is a design departure from the simpler Sauber-style exhaust/sidepod of 2012. Unusually the sidepods are devoid of any aero add-ons to aid the exhaust redirection; we can expect developments in this area before Melbourne.
Along the centre line, the car has a neat rollhoop set-up with exposed struts supporting the inlet. The roll structure blends back into a unique arched engine cover, at the rear of which is a large rounded cooling outlet, which is supplemented by cooling outlets at the tail of the sidepods.
Marussia will be the only team to run the Cosworth engine in 2013 and continues to develop its own gearcase with Xtrac making the gear cluster. For the first time the team will have KERS fitted, the system being provided by Williams.
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