Sauber F1 launch: C37 wheelbase tweak hints at 2018 Ferrari change

Sauber says it has lengthened the wheelbase of its 2018 Formula 1 car, a change that offers clues about what supplier Ferrari may have done with its new challenger

Sauber F1 launch: C37 wheelbase tweak hints at 2018 Ferrari change

The Swiss outfit revealed its aggressive new C37 on Tuesday, featuring Alfa Romeo branding as a result of a closer collaboration with Ferrari for the 2018 season.

The new car features a different aerodynamic and mechanical concept to its predecessor - including following the lead set by Mercedes and Toro Rosso last year of having high front wishbones to help clear up airflow underneath the chassis.

The car's wheelbase has also been lengthened for aerodynamic reasons, with increasing suggestions that Ferrari has also elected to go with a longer base compared to last year.

Sauber technical director Joerg Zander said: "The C37 is an all new race machine. It is based on a much more innovative and radical aerodynamic concept.

"You will note that the nose and front wing concept has changed.

"The wheelbase has been changed which means the front axle is moved further forwards.

"This is in order to provide more space for turning elements in order to enhance aerodynamic performance.

Why Sauber-Alfa is already on another level

"We also changed the wishbone height to a larger height in order to enhance aerodynamic performance and as well we changed the inboard suspension elements to a much more compact and lighter design.

"Further back you will see the bodywork is much more slender.

"The packaging around the new cooling system is very tight. The design office has put a lot of effort into this."

Sauber agreed a new deal with Ferrari to use its latest specification engine and gearbox for 2018, and the C37 will also use the same rear suspension as the manufacturer.

"At the back of the car we have the new 2018 Ferrari engine which will power us to very good positions," added Zander.

"We also have the gearbox of the Ferrari together with the rear suspension - which meant we had to move the rear suspension by 40mm further backwards."

Zander hopes that the C37 is a stable car for drivers Marcus Ericsson and Charles Leclerc. Major updates on the car are also set to be introduced in the early stages of the season.

"There is a development plan in place for 2018 and we are going to introduce major upgrades on the aerodynamic package," added Zander.

"There will be new floors and a new front wing, and perhaps also new bodywork elements being introduced.

"We split those in the beginning or first half of the season to some particular races.

"Later, in the second part of the season, there will be some key upgrades presented."

shares
comments
Autosport F1 Podcast: Is Red Bull's 2018 F1 car a title contender?
Previous article

Autosport F1 Podcast: Is Red Bull's 2018 F1 car a title contender?

Next article

The battle for F1's most coveted seat

The battle for F1's most coveted seat
Why Mercedes believes it can make the step F1 needs to fight Red Bull Plus

Why Mercedes believes it can make the step F1 needs to fight Red Bull

The 2022 Formula 1 season was Mercedes' leanest for a decade, achieving just a solitary pole and grand prix win. Yet the team is confident it has got the tools it needs to cast that disappointment aside and return to the front of the field again next year

How BRM's one-off F1 double defied its rollercoaster history Plus

How BRM's one-off F1 double defied its rollercoaster history

It’s 60 years since BRM achieved its goal and Graham Hill led the team to a world title double. But that was just part of the remarkable story of a unique team that at times overstretched its resources and had its fair share of disappointments

Formula 1
Dec 8, 2022
The bold F1 DRS experiment that could end the debate forever Plus

The bold F1 DRS experiment that could end the debate forever

OPINION: The effectiveness of DRS in Formula 1 remains a topic of debate as the winter break gives a chance for reflection on the racing we saw in 2022. For all of its detractors, perhaps an experiment where DRS is cast aside and the impact this has on racing is in order to truly understand its merits in modern F1

Formula 1
Dec 8, 2022
The sliding doors moment that saved Red Bull and Porsche Plus

The sliding doors moment that saved Red Bull and Porsche

OPINION: Everything looked set for Red Bull and Porsche to join forces for the 2026 season, before the marriage between both parties was called off. While at the time it looked like a major coup for Formula 1 in gaining both VW Group powerhouses Audi and Porsche for 2026, Red Bull and Porsche have really been spared a potentially fractious relationship.

Formula 1
Dec 7, 2022
How Tyrrell’s post-Stewart era descended into a fight to survive Plus

How Tyrrell’s post-Stewart era descended into a fight to survive

Glory days for Tyrrell became increasingly infrequent
 after Jackie Stewart’s retirement. But in the latest instalment of his history of the team for Autosport's sister title GP Racing, 
MAURICE HAMILTON recalls how Ken Tyrrell’s plucky and defiantly small team stayed bold enough to innovate – springing a surprise with F1’s first six-wheeled car

Formula 1
Dec 6, 2022
The forgettable final car of a former F1 giant that gave Damon Hill his start Plus

The forgettable final car of a former F1 giant that gave Damon Hill his start

While it launched the F1 career 
of a future world champion, STUART CODLING recalls that the BT60 was also the final nail in the coffin of a once-great marque 30 years ago. Here is its story

Formula 1
Dec 5, 2022
How departing F1 boss Brawn views F1’s new rules - and the future Plus

How departing F1 boss Brawn views F1’s new rules - and the future

Multiple-title-winning designer and team boss Ross Brawn is finally leaving Formula 1 after nearly 50 years in motorsport. But he still has plenty of insights on what’s working and what comes next, as he revealed to Autosport in a far-reaching exclusive interview in Abu Dhabi

Formula 1
Dec 2, 2022
The key F1 management call Ferrari must make to avoid more defeat Plus

The key F1 management call Ferrari must make to avoid more defeat

OPINION: Mattia Binotto’s departure from Ferrari will naturally bring a range of changes across the Formula 1 team. But how the changes shape up and the impact they could have is set to be dictated by a key direction Ferrari’s top dogs will need to pick

Formula 1
Nov 30, 2022