BMW Sauber: The Potential for More?
By: Jeremy McMullen
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By: Jeremy McMullen
| At the start of last season there were many questions surrounding the new BMW Sauber alliance. The question everyone, in and around Formula One, had was, 'How good could they be?' The question was asked with a genuine amount of doubt and an unsure feeling. This year, however, the same question remains but with a noted excitement, impatience, and expectation, 'How good could they be?!' BMW Sauber took the first step in building that excited anticipation when it literally blew the veil of its new F1.07 chassis in Valencia, Spain.
After a short light display to get the excitement to build, a globe-like veil was pulled away to reveal BMW Sauber's latest commitment toward the Formula One championship. Motorsports Director for BMW, Mario Theissen, admitted, however, the team was still a couple of years away from making a real run at the championship. But to compete in Formula One, and to be successful, there has to be commitment.
Only a few years ago there were only three teams truly battling for the top points scoring positions. Last year, gave further proof those days have changed and BMW Sauber's F1.06 was right in the middle of the mix. So, could the new F1.07 have what it takes to be a race winner? Mario Theissen made it clear that was the focus and aim this year. Though perhaps unable to win outright, the plan is that the F1.07 would be in close enough contention to take advantage of any mistakes or misfortunes. Undoubtedly, the BMW powerplant has what it takes to get the job done. Time will tell whether the new .07 combines the necessary aero revisions to effectively take advantage of its powerplant and be in a position to win races. And due to the new homologation rules in effect this year, more emphasis has been placed on aerodynamic tweaks and component efficiency to make up the necessary performance losses.
Building off of last year's basic design, this year's F1.07 touts refined designs of the nose, cooling inlets, and rear diffuser. This year's design, however, also incorporates advances in chassis strengthening and design, gearbox technology, suspension and steering technology, as well as, electronics upgrades.