New Sauber follows Ferrari

Swiss team Sauber has unveiled its 2004 Formula 1 challenger, the C23, at Salzburg airport in Austria. Its new chassis design outwardly features some styling cues from last year's Ferrari, and the team will use the Scuderia's 2004 engine, albeit rebadged by Petronas

New Sauber follows Ferrari

The Hinwil-based outfit has bucked its own trend of using a twin keel monocoque, and has reverted to a central pillar for its front suspension attachment. The design also incorporates Ferrari's gearbox as well as its engine into the package, and the team claims that many components have stiffened for 2004 without adding extra weight.

The C23 includes a number of Ferrari-esque aspects, including a significantly more curved nose section, crafted flanks to the sidepods and similar flick-ups ahead of the rear wheels.

"Our goal is to clearly improve our performance over 2003," said team principal Peter Sauber. "How well we manage this will depend on how quickly we can translate the results from our new windtunnel to the race track. The competition in Formula 1 is tougher than ever with seven teams supported by global corporations. The budgets have exploded in recent years.

"The whole squad is highly motivated, and even as a private team we can stand out ground against the manufacturers. This is not an easy task, but we are ready to accept the challenge. We're going into our eighth year with Ferrari and Petronas, and our 10th with Red Bull. This stability is our strength. Partnerships are the basis of our existence."

Sauber will receive 35 new engines from Ferrari, via its Malaysian partner Petronas this season.

"We are using the same model engine [as Ferrari] for the first time," said Petronas engine chief Osamu Goto. "Despite the new [long-life] regulations, there has been a weight reduction of the engine."

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