Voice of the F1 Fans: Ferrari’s new Blingmobile Part 3 – The bad joke

Brought to you by TheJudge13 contributor landroni

This series of articles looks is some length at the latest futuristic design proposed by Ferrari and some of the issues surrounding it and F1 more generally. Part II introduced the clowns. Part III discusses the bad joke…

ferrari bling rear - 1424165000

Even from the rear, what were they thinking?!

As TJ13 reported, you’ve gotta love Ferrari! Here’s the latest from Ferrari.com:
“Would it be possible to come up with an F1 car which not only is technologically advanced, but also captivating to the eye and aggressive-looking? And could this be made without having to overturn the current technical rules?

At Ferrari, we believe so. Let us introduce you to the ‘concept design’ that was conceived by our design studio (Centro Stile Ferrari) together with the Scuderia’s aero department.

Minimal changes give the car a look that is way different from what have been familiar with so far. Our challenge was to create something that was – to put it short – better looking. We value your comments on that.”

Minimal changes – without having to overturn the current technical regulations” – REALLY??? WTF???

Perhaps I should endevour to rephrase this in a parlance more amenable to Mr Arrivabene: Ma che cazzo?!

A crash-course in expressing your feelings in French…

As Our Honour helpfully points out, “Fundamental to this look is the loss of open wheel racing, as the trim around the wheels and the width of the side-pods creates this illusion if not enclosing the wheels entirely.

There are huge issues around the design of the front of this car from a safety perspective which the FIA have been attempting to regulate into front end design over the past few seasons. Further, the front lower wing overlapping the front tyres resolves what has been a problem Ferrari have managed less well than others – air flow around the tyre.

These may be fussy and off the cuff observations, but there are many that could be made of a similar nature.

More importantly, a car like this would in fact require a huge change in the regulations. It would be like throwing up the cards in the air once again – and seeing who comes up with the best solution.”

A crash-course in expressing your feelings in Krusty-talk…

TJ13 goes on to underline that “A whole new set of regulations might appear to be all too convenient for a team who failed miserably to take advantage of the last mega change – for 2014 – and are at best second in engine design and further back in the current pecking order as far as the chassis is concerned.

And once again, the costs of a whole new concept of F1 car will be punitive to the smaller teams – and maybe see off, a couple more from the sport.

“Level the playing field once more and give us another go” – is certainly one interpretation of the message behind this PR stunt.”

What’s in a Marlboro Man?

Sensing that no one really understood their bad joke, and most everyone simply ignored it, Marlboro Man—the marketing expert—helpfully designed a PR spin as quickly as a week later, confiding that Ferrarista marketeers merely wanted to “provoke”: “That car was a provocation, but not so far from the reality that we could achieve in the future. […] I want to ask to every team to try to propose a concept car. In this way we are going to move something. That was a provocation.

“Our message was mainly ‘try to liberate the creativity and create a beautiful car’. We will not say we were first or second, or ours is better. We are happy to try to move the status quo.”

And who pray tell was Ferrari trying to provoke?

Mercedes? The Merc is so far in front of all else, that the last thing that the Wolff wants is change.

Red Bull? With Vettel jumping ships, Newey stepping sideways, and Renault producing a 2nd iteration of their delightfully smelling melted cheese (or fondue, as they’re calling it in Viry-Châtillon), Red Bull is slowly transitioning into a Red Cow. And it’s desperately trying to camouflage the transition under zebra stripes… Only recently Spice Boy has confided in his latest wet dreams of “closer racing”, while a working engine is never far from his most intimate fantasies. If only he could get his hands on an “engine that could”…

red bull camouflage - untitled10

Is it a Bull or a Cow?

Williams? The Williams pony is happily trundling in the shadow of their bigger brothers, the Merc war steeds. Having just managed to improbably hop from 9th in 2013 to 3rd in 2014, and often being the best package behind the Mercs in 2014, Williams has its eyes firmly set on capitalising on this unexpected momentum and has no thoughts to spare on such revolutionary nonsense.

McLaren? Well, hmm… Between Alonso’s X-Files crashing (and the resulting public lynching) and Honda scratching their heads on how to manage throwing the McLaren over the finish line… Suffice to say revolutions are rather low on their priority list, and their strongest of prayers go to merely finishing GPs ahead of Manor. Not to mention that Honda shall likely bow out at the first major change, especially an engine change.

So much for the grandees having any interest in this “provocation”.

Part IV will introduce the bloody emergency room…

Disclaimer: TheJudge13 provides a platform for Formula 1 fans to publish their voice on matters relating to Formula 1. The views expressed in Voice of #F1 Fans are those of the contributor and not those held by TJ13.

11 responses to “Voice of the F1 Fans: Ferrari’s new Blingmobile Part 3 – The bad joke

  1. I still don’t get this… It’s almost as if you saw the concept car, took a sharp intake of breath and screamed ‘I HATE it!’ and then started typing. Do you actually think that F1 cars will look like this in the near future? Or are you just being deliberately provocative because you don’t like Ferrari? And this all from what has been admitted to be a technical exercise and an open offer to the teams – the most important stakeholders in F1 – to give fans a glimpse at their views of the direction the sport should go in. You’ve got a bee in your bonnet about it, we get it. Your angle of attack though is almost palpably absurd. You’ve spent as much time getting yourself wound up over what amounts to a trifle as the designers did coming up with the render in the first place! And there isn’t a conspiracy centreing around Ferrari defining the formula in the future however much you believe there to be. It certainly feels like you do though…

    • The point is that it’s an eye catching absurdity, which grabbed a huge amount of media attention.
      Landroni is quite rightly considering ‘what did they mean by that ?’

      • “Landroni is quite rightly considering ‘what did they mean by that ?’”
        I’m not sure “considering” is the correct term here, it seems more to be outright criticizing.

        I simply considered this rendering as art. I thought it looked wild, but had no real relevance.

      • @Nigel
        “The point is that it’s an eye catching absurdity, which grabbed a huge amount of media attention.”

        Exactly, this! What did they mean by that? Why now? And how does it fit within the wider context of current F1 events?

        What was most disturbing with the Ferrari proposal was the timing: they threw it to the world the very same month that small F1 teams were desperately trying to find ways to avoid going bankrupt (pooling resources to become co-constructors, stealing from others on their deathbed, breaking contracts with drivers, etc.). Surely this wasn’t the most appropriate time to ask teams to discuss regulating looks of future F1 cars?

        And it’s not as if this proposal came alone, by its own. At the very same time Ferrari was advocating a return to V8 engines (yet more expenses heaped upon small teams), just like last year it was advocating ditching the V6 engines (after it cost billions to develop). Ferrari would NEVER have made any such noises if they were in front instead of the Mercs, yet because they were not winning they found it appropriate to push the discussions in the Strategy Group towards more cost increases and rule-rewriting: new looks, new old monster engines, wider tires, more testing, etc., etc.

        It is hard not to see the Ferrari proposal as a low, self-serving move designed to keep the ball rolling in the power play of cost reductions vs rule re-rewriting and budget-busting measures. When the SG convenes to discuss whether to switch to V8’s, adopt a futuristic chassis or switch to monster tires; and somehow musters the will to reject them wholesale, it’s very hard to find the time or the will to discuss matters that actually matter to half the grid, the half that is going slowly but steadily out of business.

        And readers surprised be not at the article’s harsh tone towards Ferrari: Ferrari hold immense political power in the F1 village, has blackmailed the sport for decades into getting more and more kickbacks, and hold effective and still binding regulatory powers (it can literally veto technological changes). Ferrari doesn’t JUST propose a new design to give fans a glimpse at their views of the direction the sport should go in… The subtext of their moves is always much more subtle than that.

    • SF, I completely agree with you.

      I think I/we are not alone in thinking the idea in the first place is pretty nice and that the Ferrari blingmobile looks actually pretty sweet.

      I don’t know, landroni, where the hatred comes from, but so far this reads like the longest hissy fit that I’ve read on the internet in years and the venom that is seeping from the spaces between the words is most unbecoming.

      Don’t get me wrong, you’re completely entitled to your opinion and to stating it, but the way you’re doing it with these articles you are making, at least to some of us, a bit of a fool out of yourself to the extent that it’s becoming clear who the real clown is …

    • @Starship Fighter

      “It’s almost as if you saw the concept car, took a sharp intake of breath and screamed ‘I HATE it!’ and then started typing.”

      Oh, don’t get me wrong. I think the drawings are quite nice aesthetically, and I would love to see such cars racing… in Formula Ferrari, or perhaps a Ferrari entry in WEC. But the context for the Ferrari proposal is all wrong. These drawings have nothing to do with open-wheel racing, let alone F1…

      What does Ferrari tell us: “F1 concept design”, “without having to overturn the current technical rules”, and “Minimal changes”.

      What do they actually propose: a design that is effectively NOT open-wheel, which requires quite literally throwing the current rule-book to the bin and coming up with a new one. The Ferrari design simply tries to hide an F1 car under Ferrari overalls…

      At best this proposal is disingenuous, at worst it’s a bare-faced lie. So why did Ferrari propose this concept design in the first place? And why now?

      • Why now? Formula 1 is dying, it’s as simple as that. In it’s current form, with it’s current owners and with TV coverage increasingly behind paywalls it’s going to the wall fast. In my opinion, at the very least F1 needs to open itself to a new generation of fans, young fans who will, as I was in the late 80’s, be captivated by these marvellous machines and the warriors piloting them. The clearest way to do that is to promote the HELL out of Formula 1 on social media, an area which the sport and it’s owners have been frankly useless at. That design rattled around Twitter and Facebook and got people talking about the sport within a context of ‘F1 has problems. How about this for a solution?’ I even had friends who had never shown an interest in the sport wanting to talk about it because they thought that was how F1 cars were going to look and they were genuinely excited at the prospect.
        I totally understand where you’re coming from, despite disagreeing with you, but the point that you’re making; what is Ferrari’s ulterior motive? is entirely clear. They exist, yes, to sell cars, but beyond that they exist to race in Formula 1. The winds of change are blowing through the sport and Ferrari NEED to make sure that they are at the vanguard of those changes. I for one cannot blame them, and as the only team to have been competing from the very beginning do you not feel that their voice is worth listening to? We can go back and forth about the equanimity of Ferrari’s deal with FOM and whether that money should go to the smaller teams of course, and everyone will have their own opinion about that, but when it comes to the very survival of the sport I feel that no one will fight harder than Ferrari to get bums on seats and hearts filled with the passion that F1, at it’s absolute best, can inspire in people…

    • Love that article. I’ve said for YEARS that the only formula required is to say to the teams ‘you’ve got 100 litres (egs) of fuel to compete with every race. Go build a car!’ Then we’d see some engineering! As sad as it is, it all started to go downhill when Senna died. Something had to be done, and that something was to give all of the power to the FIA whose only concern it seems is to see that no one ever dies in an F1 prototype again. It’s a laudable aim of course but it has made the sport progressively more sanitised and the rulemakers more and more conservative. Combine that with the desire to be seen as, if not eco-friendly then at least eco-neutral and you have what we have; a formula based upon conservation, or doing the bare minimum required to win…

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