Toro Rosso faced 'massive' design change to use Ferrari F1 engine

Toro Rosso was forced into a radical redesign of its 2016 Formula 1 car to accommodate its new Ferrari power unit, according to technical director James Key

Toro Rosso faced 'massive' design change to use Ferrari F1 engine

It was not until late last year Toro Rosso formally ditched engine partner Renault and reverted back to Ferrari, whom it had previously worked with from 2007-'13.

That, however, meant a profound redevelopment of the STR11 that will hit the track for the first time on Monday when pre-season testing starts at the Circuit de Catalunya in Barcelona.

Explaining the alterations, Key said: "The design change was massive. It was completely different.

"What we tried to do was take the philosophy of what we had already designed - aerodynamically and mechanically - and adapt it to the Ferrari installation, rather than start again because you can't really start again in October/November.

"But the implications have been enormous. Everyone has worked incredibly hard for two to three months to get this together.

"And it's not just the shape of it. It's the specifications of everything.

"The cooling systems are different, the electronics are different, the software changes, the energy management strategies are new to us as well.

"So it's been a whole range of things we have to adapt to and learn."

There are hopes inside Faenza the car could be quicker this season compared to last by up to a second, and Red Bull boss Christian Horner expects his Renault-powered team to start the year behind Toro Rosso.

"Our predictions move around quite a bit as more information comes to light," added Key.

"One second is a massive step from one year to the next. You'd normally expect to have quite a bit less than that.

"If you transfer all the aero performance we've found, that will be a reasonable step.

"The engine is a good step, but we need to see on track first how everything is working and whether we are able to make the most of that.

"But it's all relevant. We have a '15-spec engine, which is a really good step from Ferrari.

"Other people will have a '16 spec, and I don't know how much is in that.

"So while we might make a good step, it could be the case for others as well.

"We'll have to see what the performance is, but if the best predictions are right then it could be as much as that [a second improvement]."

shares
comments
Adrian Newey's Red Bull F1 involvement on car concept, not details

Previous article

Adrian Newey's Red Bull F1 involvement on car concept, not details

Next article

Online F1 launches are artificial, reckons Daniel Ricciardo

Online F1 launches are artificial, reckons Daniel Ricciardo
Load comments

About this article

Series Formula 1
Teams Ferrari , Toro Rosso
Author Ian Parkes
The defining traits that set F1’s best apart Plus

The defining traits that set F1’s best apart

What makes the very best drivers in Formula 1 stand out among what is already a highly elite bunch? ANDREW BENSON takes a closer look at those with the special blend of skill, judgment, feel 
and attitude that sets only a select 
few apart from the rest.

How an unlikely F1 outsider gained acceptance Plus

How an unlikely F1 outsider gained acceptance

Channel 4's decision to pick Steve Jones as presenter of its Formula 1 coverage in 2016 raised eyebrows, and his presenting style grated with many fans at first. But, says BEN EDWARDS, Jones has developed into a presenter ripe for modern F1's direction

Formula 1
Mar 6, 2021
The updates Williams hopes will lead to a points-scoring return Plus

The updates Williams hopes will lead to a points-scoring return

After producing a car which demonstrated progress but lacked the points to prove it last year, Williams starts its new era of team ownership with the FW43B, its bid to continue the climb up the Formula 1 grid in 2021

Formula 1
Mar 5, 2021
How Ferrari plans to recover from its 2020 F1 nightmare Plus

How Ferrari plans to recover from its 2020 F1 nightmare

The 2020 Formula 1 season was Ferrari's worst for 40 years as it slumped to sixth in the standings. A repeat performance will not be acceptable for the proud Italian team, which has adopted a notably pragmatic approach to forging its path back to the top

Formula 1
Mar 4, 2021
Why Aston Martin’s arrival is more than just new green livery Plus

Why Aston Martin’s arrival is more than just new green livery

In the most eagerly anticipated Formula 1 team launch of the season, the rebranded Aston Martin squad’s changes go much further than the striking paint job. But rather than a restart, the team hopes to build on top of solid foundations.

Formula 1
Mar 3, 2021
The car Aston Martin begins its new F1 journey with Plus

The car Aston Martin begins its new F1 journey with

The team formerly known as Racing Point gambled successfully on a Mercedes look-alike in 2020 as it mounted a strong challenge for third in the constructors' race and won the Sakhir GP. Now clothed in British racing green, Aston Martin's first Formula 1 challenger since 1960 provides the clearest indicator yet of what to expect from the new-for-2021 regulations

Formula 1
Mar 3, 2021
The driver problems facing Mercedes in 2021 Plus

The driver problems facing Mercedes in 2021

Ahead of the new Formula 1 season, reigning world champions Mercedes will take on challenges both old and new. This also can be said for its driver conundrum which could become key to sustaining its ongoing success

Formula 1
Mar 2, 2021
How Alpine's cure to 2021 F1 rules starts at the front Plus

How Alpine's cure to 2021 F1 rules starts at the front

A new name, new faces and new colours pulls the rebranded Alpine Formula 1 team into a new era while carrying over core elements of its 2020 car. But under the surface there's more than meets the eye with the A521 which hints at how the team will tackle 2021

Formula 1
Mar 2, 2021