In a blend of heritage and cutting-edge innovation, Ferrari has unveiled the SF-24, its contender for the 2024 Formula 1 World Championship. The launch, a blend of physical presence and digital reach, saw Ferrari‘s top brass, including President John Elkann, CEO Benedetto Vigna, and Vice-President Piero Ferrari, come together at the Fiorano track.
With the team gearing up for the busiest season in F1 history, featuring 24 races, the unveiling was not just a showcase of engineering excellence but also a statement of intent for the year ahead.
The SF-24, marking Ferrari‘s 70th entry into Formula 1, represents more than just an evolution. It’s a significant break from its predecessors, not just in performance but in philosophy and aesthetics.
Enrico Cardile‘s design team has focused on creating a car that provides ease of handling and predictable responses, drawing on the positive feedback from drivers Charles Leclerc and Carlos Sainz towards last season’s end. The aim is clear: to leverage the power unit’s capabilities fully and harness the drivers’ prowess to the maximum.
“With the SF-24 we wanted to create a completely new platform and in fact, every area of the car has been redesigned, even if our starting point was the development direction we adopted last year and which saw us take a leap forward in terms of competitiveness in the final part of the season,” Cardile indicated.
At first glance, the SF-24 catches the eye with its distinct livery. The introduction of white and yellow alongside Ferrari’s iconic red pays homage to the marque’s history and its connection to Modena and the World Endurance Championship.
This year, the SF-24 shares the same shade of red, with a matte finish, as the WEC 499P, reinforcing the synergy across Ferrari‘s racing endeavors. The design sees a reduction in black components, focusing on the floor and bargeboards, while introducing red wheels adorned with white and yellow stripes, embodying Ferrari’s racing spirit.
Ferrari Expectations and Ambitions for 2024
With the pre-season test in Bahrain looming, the SF-24’s on-track behavior remains a keen area of interest, especially following promising simulator sessions.
Team Principal Fred Vasseur emphasizes the need for a strong start, continuous improvement, and strategic race management to ensure success in what is anticipated to be a fiercely competitive season.
“Presenting a new car to the world for the first time is always a very exciting moment for me and the drivers, even if we are all already thinking about the moment we will go head to head with our rivals on track,” Vasseur said in a statement.
“This year, we must start off where we left off at the end of last season, when we were consistent front runners, with a view to constantly improving in all areas.
“The longest ever Formula 1 season awaits us and Charles, Carlos and I all agree, we must be more cinical and effective in how we manage the races, making bold choices, in order to get the best possible result at every Grand Prix.
“It’s often said that your fans can give you an extra gear and that will definitely be true in what will be a very closely contested championship and we are proud to know we can count on our ‘tifosi’ from around the world.”
Both Leclerc and Sainz have expressed optimism about the car’s drivability and consistency, critical factors in their quest for victories and consistent front-running performances.
“I like the look of the car a lot, including the white and yellow parts on the bodywork,” Leclerc said. “But of course, what really interests me is how it will perform on track, as that’s all that matters.
“The SF-24 ought to be less sensitive and easier to drive and for us drivers that’s what you need in order to do well. I expect the car to be a step forward in several areas and from the impression I formed in the simulator I think we’re where we want to be.
“This season the aim is to be front runners all the time and I want to give our fans plenty to cheer about, by dedicating race wins to them.”
Technical Innovations: Chassis and Power Unit
The SF-24 is a testament to Ferrari‘s relentless pursuit of excellence, with every aspect of the car undergoing significant redesigns. The chassis team, under Cardile, has translated driver feedback into engineering solutions aimed at delivering a car that’s not just fast but also intuitive to drive.
“When I saw the SF-24 for the first time, I couldn’t wait to jump in and fire it up,” Sainz said. “Now, I’m looking forward to driving it on track to see if it correlates with the feeling I had from the simulator, which is that it’s the step forward we all want.
“The aim is to have a car that’s more drivable and therefore able to run at a consistent race pace, as these are the basic requirements to fight for wins. We drivers have done our very best to give the engineers precise feedback and I’m sure the workforce in Maranello will have listened to our needs.
“We want to give the fans something to cheer about, as they were so supportive last year, even when things weren’t going our way.”
Meanwhile, the power unit team, led by Enrico Gualtieri, faces the challenge of a frozen development landscape with ingenuity, focusing on optimizing performance and reliability amid the season’s demands.
As Ferrari steps into the 2024 season with the SF-24, the team is buoyed by a mix of optimism and determination. With a clear focus on leveraging the car’s redesigned platform and enhanced power unit, Ferrari aims to be at the forefront of every race, supported by a global legion of fans.
The SF-24 is not just a car; it’s Ferrari‘s latest chapter in a storied Formula 1 legacy, promising a thrilling blend of speed, innovation, and racing excellence.