Sauber C31 launch – first pictures and video of Sauber’s 2012 F1 car

2012 F1 cars

Sauber have unveiled their contender for the 2012 F1 championship.

The C31 was revealed today in Jerez and will be driven by Kamui Kobayashi and Sergio Perez this season.

Sauber finished seventh in the championship last year. However just days before the launch of their new car the team announce technical director James Key, who had been with them since 2010, was leaving the squad.

Sauber C31, 2012

Sauber C31, 2012

Chief designer Matt Morris says the team’s 2012 F1 car is a combination of new ideas and concepts developed from its predecessor.

Following the launch of the Sauber C31 in Jerez, Morris said: “The C31 is revolutionary where we had fresh ideas, particularly at the rear of the car, and it is an evolution where we knew we could carry over certain approaches. We had to improve on the weaknesses we identified on the C30, but at the same time we wanted to maintain its strengths.

“We had established some good directions to go in towards the end of last year with the C30 which we wanted to continue with, particularly some of our DRS developments, and some of the ways we were opting for with the car?s set up in order to improve our qualifying performance without compromising our race pace.”

Morris added he expects the ban on exhaust-blown diffusers to help the team: “Because of the new definition in the rules we know that the disadvantages we had last year with a lack of the strong exhaust effect will be less of an issue for us now. As a result we evolved further our directions from C30 regarding the overall aero development of the car.”

He added the car “will look quite different in Melbourne” once further upgrades are added to it.

Sauber C31 pictures

Kamui Kobayashi driving the Sauber C31

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132 comments on Sauber C31 launch – first pictures and video of Sauber’s 2012 F1 car

  1. Keith Collantine (@keithcollantine) said on 6th February 2012, 10:17

    First though: They really haven’t made that livery work with the sponsorship.

    • dennis (@dennis) said on 6th February 2012, 10:34


      And that with the little amount of sponsors there are.
      I’m usually a fan of simple race designs, like the Gulf Porsches, Oreca Vipers, or the Gitanes Matras… However, gray has never really been a race car colour. And mixed with the vast amount of differently coloured sponsors, as you mentioned, it all fals apart really.

      Even worse, I don’t think there’s a connection whatsoever between the car and the sponsoring.

      If you ask me in a week or 2 what’s the sponsor’s name on the airbox of the Sauber I probably won’t know.

  2. ElBasque said on 6th February 2012, 10:17

    i like it

  3. nemo87 (@nemo87) said on 6th February 2012, 10:18

    urmm.. always loved how deep sauber make the overhead air intake but other than that. meh..

    really hoping mclaren have done a red bull this year and found something that the other teams ahvent with their front end..

  4. matt90 (@matt90) said on 6th February 2012, 10:19

    I hated last years Sauber, but this is even worse. They’ve even managed to make the livery worse, and that was the the least imaginative part of the car already last year.

  5. GeeMac (@geemac) said on 6th February 2012, 10:23

    I wanted Suaber to paint the car black again…but I meant paint the whole thing black, don’t just get bored at the suspension mounts and give up! Worst F1 livery for a looooong time!

  6. kkierann said on 6th February 2012, 10:23

    I like the livery this year, a lot cleaner than last year.

  7. rfs (@rfs) said on 6th February 2012, 10:23

    Does anyone else feel like they’re getting accustomed to the stepped noses already? :s

  8. dennis (@dennis) said on 6th February 2012, 10:23

    Interesting wheel design.
    The rest is rather… Unsurprising. I wonder if they keep the exhaust like that, as it seems like they neither try to aim for the rear wing, nor the brake winglets.

  9. Tom (@tomforpresident) said on 6th February 2012, 10:24

    livery aside, from the step nose back i think it looks like a neat little package, i like it, just not to look at.

  10. McG (@mcg) said on 6th February 2012, 10:27

    Would it be rude if I was sick all over myself?

  11. soundscape (@soundscape) said on 6th February 2012, 10:31

    Like or dislike aside, I think the car looks… slow. Something about that front angle, and the lines over/around the side-pods. Something’s just off about it.

  12. Ady (@ady) said on 6th February 2012, 10:31

    I assume the round ‘hoop’ on the sidepod (next to the barge boards) are designed to create a vortex next to the side pod. If this helps suck more air to the rear of the car to generate more downforce, expect other teams to copy it before the season start.

  13. vjanik said on 6th February 2012, 10:36

    i cant wait for testing to start, because we will finally stop talking about how the cars look. (i hope at least to some extent)

    its like discussing Footballer’s hairstyles before the season. i’m not really that interested.

  14. JK (@justingt5) said on 6th February 2012, 10:40

    Im amazed how many people are colour blind saying there is too much “black” when quite clearly its a shade of dark metallic Grey.

    I like it, its clean and simple. Loving the engine cover, and that front wing looks interesting (if not new I had not spotted it before) it has 2 sections towards the outer edges which curve upwards and inwards towards the rear of the wing directing air inboard of the front tyres.

  15. sato113 (@sato113) said on 6th February 2012, 10:42

    can’t make my mind up about this one. shame they got rid of those chunky wheel rims they used last year. they were cool.

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