Force India VJM05 launch – first pictures of their 2012 F1 car

2012 F1 cars

Force India VJM05, 2012

Force India VJM05, 2012

Force India have launched their 2012 F1 car at Silverstone circuit.

The VJM05 is their fourth car to use a Mercedes engine. It will be driver by Paul di Resta and Nico Hulkenberg, the latter taking Adrian Sutil’s place at the Silverstone-based squad.

The team aim to build on their best-ever result of sixth in the constructors’ championship last year.

Di Resta, who starts his second season with the team, said: “The thing we’re going for this season is a stronger start than we did last year.

“Our momentum towards the end of the year was incredible and I think everyone is still on a buzz from that and it would be great to start from where we left off.”

“I want to do better, that’s my main focus. Last year we were very close to coming fifth as a constructor and we met our ambitions by finishing sixth.

“We’ll keep moving on, as long as it’s upwards, that’s the main focus. We need to push and carry that momentum from last year.”

Di Resta and Hulkenberg each have a single F1 season to their name. Di Resta added: “Hopefully me and Nico can work well together. We’re quite young but we’re very ambitious.”

Hulkenberg, who drove for Williams in 2010 and was Force India’s reserve driver in 2011, said: “It feels good to be making a return to F1.

“I was very happy when I found out because last year, sat on the sidelines wasn’t easy. But still a good year because Force India gave me the opportunity to prove my skills on Friday mornings.

“I think I improved and continued to learn in 2011, but in different ways. Obviously I wasn’t driving, but behind the scenes, on the pitwall seeing how everything worked – these are all things that should help me in races.”

Here are the first pictures of Force India’s new F1 car:

Quotes and additional reporting by Dan Cross.

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91 comments on Force India VJM05 launch – first pictures of their 2012 F1 car

  1. damonsmedley (@damonsmedley) said on 3rd February 2012, 9:22

    I really didn’t like their livery last year, but this reworking of the same colours doesn’t actually look that bad. It’s not great, but it’s less ugly!

    There’s something about that car. It has the stepped nose, but it doesn’t ruin the rest of it. I like it, but I’ve only seen a couple of pictures.

  2. Rob Wilson (@rob-wilson) said on 3rd February 2012, 9:23

    The more of these i see the prettier the McLaren gets!

    • Slr (@slr) said on 3rd February 2012, 9:26

      I initially criticised the McLaren, now I take back every word I said.

    • egsgeg said on 3rd February 2012, 11:34

      I wonder if MCL will be faster or slower without the dropped nose?

    • JCost (@jcost) said on 3rd February 2012, 11:36

      I Wish McLaren is competitive, sure it looks good but it will worth nil unless it can perform.

      That trendy nose is ugly but can be the real thing.

    • KBAutomotive (@kbautomotive) said on 3rd February 2012, 12:01

      The McLaren nose looks much nicer, I just hope they haven’t missed a trick that everyone else has picked up on. Lets face it, McLaren do not have the best record for being quick out of the blocks at the start of a season. Can I interest anyone in the idea of an ugly MP4-27B???

      • Snafu (@snafu) said on 4th February 2012, 12:54

        since their 2011’s nose is within the limits, I don’t think they’d miss an advantage. they’ve been getting good results with that design so it was suitable for their car.

    • Mike the bike Schumacher (@mike-the-bike-schumacher) said on 3rd February 2012, 21:44

      I wonder if Mclaren have put a different spec nose on their car for the launch and will actually use same style as everyone else for the season. It could be just Mclaren keeping up appearances the way they always like to.

      • Mike (@mike) said on 4th February 2012, 5:09

        I’m not sure they can, just because certain parts of the can’t be changed (easily) and I suspect the mountings for the nose are connected to such an area.

  3. Jake (@jakehardyf1) said on 3rd February 2012, 9:24

    It looks nicer than the F2012 for sure. McLaren is still the looks winner for sure.

  4. Prisoner Monkeys (@prisoner-monkeys) said on 3rd February 2012, 9:24

    I actually kind of like it. Yes, the step in the nose is ugly, but the team has run with it, so you’ve got this real duck-bill shape at the front end. And once the shock of that livery wore off – it looks like it was coloured in by a five year-old – I decided that it was as bold as the nose design.

    The only downside? The use of hundred-point ‘Arial’ font for the Sahara logo.

    • djdaveyp85 (@djdaveyp87) said on 3rd February 2012, 11:08

      Its not arial. And its definitely bigger that 100pt!

      Sorry had to point that out! I do run a printing business!

    • matt90 (@matt90) said on 3rd February 2012, 16:17

      I agree, I like how it’s much more rounded that Caterham and Ferrari in particular. I still wish there was no step, but if there has to be then this is how I want it to look. To me this is 2nd to the McLaren so far. Ferrari are very much 4th. The trouble with Ferrari is that the step is a flat profile, by keeping the ridges and having them rounded makes the Force India’s step look less severe and more ‘gentle’ in every direction.

    • BasCB (@bascb) said on 4th February 2012, 20:42

      I must say, looking at this car closer, its nose is a lot better than the Caterham and certainly than the boxed one Ferrari presented. And the rest of the car has a nicely refined and thought out design that makes it pretty nice to look at.

      The refreshed livery is pretty good as well, although i do agree on the Sahara written on the sidepods.

  5. black (@black) said on 3rd February 2012, 9:24

    is is just me or this is much better than the ugly ferrari

    • Girts (@girts) said on 3rd February 2012, 9:35

      @black I think the FI colour scheme fits the ‘platypus’ nose better than the Ferrari red.

      • Martin (@martin1) said on 3rd February 2012, 10:39

        I think that it depends on the angle the picture was taken.
        Platypus nose is just ugly.

        • black (@black) said on 3rd February 2012, 10:50

          well i think they made it not as noticeable as the ferrari – anyway it’s still not a great looking car but it’s the best looking so far from these with stepped noses

      • BasCB (@bascb) said on 4th February 2012, 20:48

        The Force India car seems to be just more balanced a design. It’s nose is flat, but it looks organic and flowing, just like the rest of the car (like those heavily undercut sidepods and the flowing back of the engine cover).

        The Ferrari has a strange disparity between the boxy LEGO nose and the flowing forms of those sidepods and exhaust truks.

        • BasCB (@bascb) said on 4th February 2012, 20:53

          And the airbox is nice and smooth, while the Ferrari went with the extra opening seen on last years McLaren, making it buldgy

    • Roger Camp (@rogercamp) said on 3rd February 2012, 11:23

      I think it looks way better than F2012. I think it has to do with the colour scheme too. As far as the looks is concerned, McLaren has the best looking car so far. Let’s see what Newey and Lotus will bring…

  6. Maciek (@maciek) said on 3rd February 2012, 9:30

    Aesthetics aside – what is the design logic for the stepped nose? what advantage does it give over a smooth line? from my layman point of view it doesn’t intuitively make sense.

    • vjanik said on 3rd February 2012, 9:43

      a high nose helps airflow under the car to the diffuser. so they put it as high as the rules allow. The reason why there is a bump when the nose reaches the body of the car is that that can be higher (not restricted by the new rule) What ferrari FI and Caterham have done is to have the suspension mounts as high as possible which also helps airflow and there are some handling benefits as well (that outweigh the higher center of gravity)

      So you end up with the teams tracing the new FIA restrictions to the limit ending up with that nose bump.

      • Maciek (@maciek) said on 3rd February 2012, 10:16

        Well, I pretty much get all that, but just looking at the Ferrari from the side view, for example, I still don’t quite understand why the top of the car has to run in such a straight line, instead of sloping downwards, even a little, from the cockpit to the wheel – is it just a question of having enough space for the driver’s feet, the pedals, etc.? + it’s starting to look as if the FIA dropped the ball on lowering the noses, no? why didn’t they just mandate a maximum height at the tip of the nose….?

    • damonsmedley (@damonsmedley) said on 3rd February 2012, 9:46

      Comment of the week! I’d love someone to explain it to us. But it must be in layman’s terms.

  7. BasCB (@bascb) said on 3rd February 2012, 9:32

    The combination of those nose bulbs and the camera mountings make for a nose that trumps the Caterham’s.

    And its highlighted by being bright orange, oh my.

  8. Tom (@) said on 3rd February 2012, 9:34

    If it has a duck bill, it’s a hammerhead duck…is the wide black wing-shaped thing on the nose a new on-board camera?

    And are the drivers trying to hide something round the back (like the Red Bull team on the grid)?!

    • bananarama (@bananarama) said on 3rd February 2012, 10:35

      Hammerhead platypus .. I think thats all that has to be said. Other than that nose it seems the car doesn’t have anything really revolutionary on it.

    • Leggacy said on 3rd February 2012, 14:14

      Yeah, i think that is that camera pod in the front of the nose. I thought there were rules preventing them from using it as an aerodynamic device?

      • hays33d (@hays33d) said on 3rd February 2012, 20:34

        The rule is that camera mounts have to be aerodynamically neutral, like the suspension wishbones.

        Teams put them in different places. Which brings up an interesting question. How much leeway do the teams have in placing those cameras? Is that something mandated by FOM? Just wondering as different cars have different positions.

  9. Abuelo Paul (@abuello-paul) said on 3rd February 2012, 9:49

    It seems the trend is for a chisel nosed Platypus look due to new regs from FIA. Only McLaren have so far been able to convert to a stylish design. I hope the rest have a better interpretation of design and style.
    This stepped effect at the front looks as though my Gran has mangled the clay models before production.

  10. dennis (@dennis) said on 3rd February 2012, 9:53

    Not as nice looking as the McLaren, not as bad as the Ferrari nose.

    I just noticed the HUGE undercut of the sidepods. At least from that front angle it looks like they packaged everything really tightly.

  11. Dan_the_McLaren_fan (@dan_the_mclaren_fan) said on 3rd February 2012, 10:04

    Oh God, its not looking pretty : we have the ugly two-level nose, and a wide “mouth” like on the McLaren.

    On the other hand, I see the livery has been slighlty modified, and it looks a bit better…

    But I wonder what is the small part at the back of the car, below the rear wing…

  12. mingmong said on 3rd February 2012, 10:11

    Nonetheless a very tidy package by FORCE, particularly around the cooling, sidepods & rear. I also see the have reverted back to a conventional role-hoop.

  13. electrolite (@electrolite) said on 3rd February 2012, 10:18

    Is weird that I find this the prettiest Force India in a few years? They’ve made the stepped nose work…somehow. Perhaps it’s the livery, but the nose looks ‘aggressive’ as opposed to sin-ugly.

  14. Best looking horrible nose yet.

  15. Cyclops_PL (@cyclops_pl) said on 3rd February 2012, 10:21

    Just breath slowly and go back to McLaren gallery and everything will be all right … *breath in, breath out…*

  16. I have hated all FIs since they have been in the sport but this is bloody gorgeous. I’ve wanted them to be less white for ages and they finally are! :D The nose is kind of weird with that dip/step but I think I really like it which means by tomorrow I’ll probably be repulsed by it.

  17. Tom (@tomforpresident) said on 3rd February 2012, 10:25

    seriously undercut sidepods, practically double floor territory, very nice. These noses really will take some getting used too, i’m usually a fan of ‘ugly’ cars but not so sure right now.

  18. Dan Thorn (@dan-thorn) said on 3rd February 2012, 10:37

    Controversial opinion: I really like these stepped noses. Now I’m used to them, they look angular and aggressive. The Force India looks fantastic, the Ferrari is a little odd but so, so pretty in profile view, and livery aside, the Caterham looks quite good. The McLaren looks bland in comparison…

    • Agree. I’m still getting over the shock of seeing the Ferrari for the first time but I don’t mind the noses. They’re kind of mad which I like. The FI is just splendid and I only don’t like the Caterham because of the nasty shade of green. I stand by my opinion of the Mclaren: it looks bloated, undefined and has no character.

  19. OOliver said on 3rd February 2012, 10:42

    In aerodynamic, it is often assumed that a sharp profile offers the lowest drag coefficient, but that is not necessarily true.
    You will be surprised to find that the drag induced by the blunt forehead is almost negligible.

  20. electrolite (@electrolite) said on 3rd February 2012, 10:46

    It seems FI have taken the Toro Rosso sidepod solution. They’re very flat and low.

    They’ve really made that livery work this year, haven’t they?

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