Renault’s new RS18 was unveiled recently but the car did not quite set the F1 World on fire, as it seemed pretty similar to the 2017 version.
Were the concealing something, or was the car really that similar to the 2017 version?
Renault’s F1 managing director Cyril Abiteboul has confirmed that the imagery that was released is not the actual car.
“To be extremely clear, the car that we showed in digital was really a presentation for the livery,” said Abitebou.
“I have seen on forums people trying to extrapolate things from it. Well, calm down guys – don’t try to calculate the wheelbase because it will not be representative of anything!
“Like most teams we are going to develop until the last moment, so that car is not representative of what will be shown in T9 and T10 [the first and second tests] and in Melbourne there will be more to come.
“And also there a lot of the things that are under the cover. The suspension, gearbox, engine installation, cooling – all of that has made a big, big leap in comparison to last year but that is obviously not visible.” he added.
Reliability was the major issue that Renault had to take care of and they worked hard on it through the winter while also upgrading the strong chassis platform from last year.
“We started really early in designing the first concept of the 2018 car, and started also fairly early on the engine – which is very much a carry over of last year,” he said.
“Everything had to be better and more robust in terms of reliability, which has been the main focus. Really the target was to have a very healthy platform from which we could build and bring some extra performance in the season. We feel it is going to be a race for development.
“Every single time we put the car into the wind tunnel, we find more gains and there is much more to come. So it was really about making sure that we have the systems in place – particularly suspension and gearbox.
“We had so much deficit that we needed to make up in one car, so there are many things that are in that one and obviously there is more to come.” he added.
What do you make of the new Renault RS18?