Caterham CT01

Caterham CT01 images revealed early

2012 F1 carsPosted on Author Keith Collantine

The first pictures of the Caterham CT01 have appeared ahead of its official publication tomorrow.

Images taken from the current issue of F1 Racing have been posted online.

Caterham later issued an official image of the new car. The CT01’s distinctive stepped nose is a consequence of new rules aimed at lowering the noses of the cars.

More information on the 2012 F1 season.

2012 F1 cars

Browse all 2012 F1 cars articles

235 comments on “Caterham CT01 images revealed early”

      1. It’s not exactly a looker thats for sure. But to be honest I couldn’t care less, I just hope its quick. Caterham are easily my favourite new team, I think they’ve done a great job so far starting from scratch.

        It will be interesting to see if Mclaren, Ferrari, RBR are able to implement the new regulations without having to adopt such a radicle step on the nose. Other F1 forums have been debating whether the MP4-26 and F150 would almost meet the 2012 nose specs already, so hopefully they won’t have to change too much.

    1. My eyes…
      When they first said the front noses were going to be lower in 2012 I expected/wanted something like this
      Why can’t they have them even lower and have a smooth decrease in height instead of a sudden 7.5cm drop?

      1. exactly.

        Looking at the new CT01 i dont think the new regulations have solved the safety issue at all. I was expecting something like the Brawn nose. Something that would prevent the cars from launching (webber in valencia) or hitting the driver in the head with a sideways collision.

        I hope this is a one off, and the rest of the teams come up with something more natural.

      2. @Pato Milan

        I wanted something like that too, but after reading Scarabs interpretation I was expecting something like. The days of good looking F1 cars are fast disappearing, friend. I think even a street luge looks better than this!

      3. For me a good looking F1 car would have a low thin nose, the wing lengths and height from before 2009 with no winglets on the body, no barge boards, no turning vanes, no nonsense things on the wheels (covers or Ferrari’s rims), overall a lower height. Imagine, an F1 car with the current length and proportionate front and rear wings, plain body and low like in the old days…
        Dreaming is always nice….

      1. No, just kidding, though the nose of this Caterham CT01 is genuinely ugly. Now that I’ve seen this car, I’d bet this team won’t improve on last season’s championship position.

        Concerning the Indycars: their new Dallara DW12 is seriously good-looking. It throws away that box-like mid/rear end shape. Don’t care whether they’ll be slower than the old car. I think they’ll get quicker over time.

        1. Agreed on The DW12. I really like it! Especially from the front. Indycar will hopefully take a step forward this year.

          I like all of this new Caterham, except that bloody nose. It’s worse than Prost, and way worse than the old Walrus nose BMW, I actually kind of liked that one.

      1. What’s the old saying about if it looks fast it is?

        It’s an old saying but it was mostly said before wind tunnels became widely used – the new saying is something like if it’s fast it’s beautiful.

      1. I like it in the first place, but even then it’s still growing on me. The haunches at the back of the sidepods… it looks like a cat primed and ready to pounce. It’s very back-heavy which makes it look even more prepared to launch itself forward in a flurry of noisy speed.

        It’s a beautiful car.

        This Caterham… it looks like a green and yellow sack of marbles. Lumpy.

    1. The Dallara IndyCar DW12 chassis looks much better than this, and the nose, which is the most prominent part of an F1 car, is balanced and proportionate. This one looks more like this crocodile –

    1. But all of them will probably look like this! :P

      Actually, I think the livery exaggerates its contours a little bit. The yellow stripes on the nose end just before the bulges, which doesn’t exactly help.

      For example, this drawing by Craig Scarborough shows what he expects the 2012 cars to look like, and whilst it’s not as pretty as the 2010 and 2011 cars, I don’t think it looks as ugly as the Lotus.

      Having said that, we’ve only seen two angles of this car so far. It might not be that bad.

  1. I have a theory about the sheer ugliness. Back when the regulations were announced, a lot of the teams complained that their cars were going to look ugly. They really just wanted the raised noses back because that would improve airflow over the spoiler, producing more downforce. This staggered nose is such an inelegant and basic design (the MP4-26 nose is a fine example of what they should be doing) that I can’t help but wonder if the teams are deliberately making ugly cars to try and get such an overwhelming reaction that the FIA relents and reverts the ruling.

    1. It’s a nice theory, but the whole of the cars aerodynamics is designed by how the flow is effected by the nose and the front wing. There’s no way any team will want a change to the regulations until next season, and their not going to run an inefficient car for all the races just to get the FIA to change their minds.

      Personally, I have a problem with the regulatons that show a rectangular zone where no body work can be. Alll they had to do was make this zone trapezoidal, and these cars would both look alright, and also not pose a threat to the heads of other racers. This is the FIA we are talking about though.

    2. Deliberately making ugly cars?
      I’m sure glad your not an F1 car designer, you’d make the likes of Ferrari and McLaren go into administration.
      “Oooh lets invest hundreds of millions of pounds, and put our blood sweat and tears into making an ugly car, so the FIA can let us make a nice looking one,were not here to compete, no not at all”
      Sheer Stupidity on your part @PM

    1. Because the FIA wants to clamp down on high noses. They’ve been getting higher and higher for the past two years, and the FIA is concerned that in the event of a head-on collision – not unlike the Liuzzi-Schumacher crash in Abu Dhabi back in 2010 – the nose of one car could pick up on top of the other, there were would be little to stop the driver from receiving a Formula 1 car to the face. No doubt they intended that the 2012 cars would look more like last year’s McLaren, but because of the wording of the 2012 rules, only everything forward of the bulkhead (the point along the front axle) needs to be 55cm. Everything behind it can be 62.5cm, and so Caterham have clearly gone in for this split-level nose.

      1. I believed it was more to do with counteracting any lift generated when a high nose hit a wheel (like webber vs kovalainen at valencia ’10) – although there were probably several factors

        1. Any nose->wheel contact will involve one of the cars getting airborne – even worse if the front wheel makes contact to a rear wheel. This isn’t an issue unique to F1, but rather any form of open wheel racing (everything from your local kart races to Dan Wheldon’s crash last year).

          1. the nose height will accentuate the problem. that post wasn’t just my speculation, there was fact behind it – for backup, this is a quote from mike gascoyne yesterday: “They want to limit the heights of noses for the shunts when a car hits another car’s tyre and (risks) taking off.” [from bbc f1 website]

        1. @matthewf1 – The regulations do allow for a slope, provided that the point over the front bulkhead is no more than 55cm above ground. I think this is what the FIA intended all along, and to my mind it would be the best solution because the Caterham design has a 7.5cm step in the middle of the nose. That can’t be particularly efficient aerodynamically.

          1. @adam PM is provided a detailed opinion on the technical aspects of the car. This is interesting.

            What have you provided?

            Also, on topic.
            @Prisoner Monkeys
            I think there must be a reason that the step costs less than the gain it provides. I suspect it will be controlling airflow around the side of the drivers head. But I suspect scarbs would have a more examiined opinion.

            For me, I’m most interested in the back of the car, which for the most part is blacked out. It is possible to see where the suspension struts are headed and to be honest, it looks rather simple.

            I suppose from Caterham a rather conservative approach is to be expected.

          2. @Mike I would much rather trust Caterham, their team of engineers and the 6 months of design and development that has gone into this car. Opinions are great but there are too many internet hacks about who think they know best.

          3. @Adam

            I honestly can’t see your problem.

            More interpretations of the technical aspects can’t be a bad thing.

            And exactly what part of his comment do you think was wrong? I think you’d be crazy if you said the step (in itself) was aerodynamically efficient. However, there must be, as you suggested, a reason the Caterham designers have done this. Prisoner monkeys comment creates a chance for us to speculate as to why!

            Personally, I’m fairly sure in my mind that it’s to allow maximum airflow under the car, this increases the speed at which the air flows and thus, should lower the pressure under the car and increase the cars overall down force.

            What do you think? or have you read any interesting ideas about it?

          4. @Mike Nothing wrong with opinions or theories. The more the better. What I didn’t like though was the assertion that he knew better than the Caterham designers.

            Nobody likes the look of the new nose but there is obviously a reason for it. To me, a more gradual slope to the tip of the nose would provide a better airflow over the top of the car but my degree is not in aeronautical engineering so I am happy to bow to the experts greater knowledge.

      1. I bet they are, Fernandes tweeted something like that.

        I guess its hard to trump a million people looking on Twitter and the net searching for the first pictures for a good viral, isn’t it?

  2. Shocking at first but I’m pretty sure most of the cars will have noses like that. We’ll get used to it, just like we did with every other regulation change that apparently made the cars ‘ugly’.

    1. yep exactly..with the regulations I kind of expected this nose for some time now so no suprise. I dont know how others haven’t expected to see a nose like this.its ugly but I think most teams wil have something similar. We are all probaly going to have to get used to seeing our favourite team our drivers car noses look like this.

        1. Scarbs had some sketchs up..and the ferrari renderings sported a similar nose. Doesn’t mean that if it wasn’t on this paricular site it didn’t happen. Come to think about it keith had the link to scarbs with regards to this years design trends on one of his round ups in the past couple of days.

  3. Reading between the lines in various leaks etc. it would appear that Ferrari haven’t staggered it as much as this, but the lines of the nose and cockpit will be smoother, with the humps on either side.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>