Formula 1: Alfa Romeo become first team to unveil 2023 design

The C43 was launched at an event in Switzerland on Tuesday

Alfa Romeo have become the first team to unveil a 2023 Formula 1 design, with the target of continuing the progress they made last year.

The Switzerland-based outfit, entering their final year under the Alfa Romeo name, moved up from ninth in the 2021 championship to sixth last season.

The new C43 has revised aerodynamics, focused on a redesigned rear end.

“We need to achieve more. We always need to aim higher. Better consistency, more points,” said Valtteri Bottas.

The model unveiled by lead driver Bottas and team-mate Zhou Guanyu was a show car, but an exact copy of the 2023 design as it will run for the first time at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya in a two-day test at the end of the week – scheduled for Friday and Saturday.

Machines displayed in launches by Red Bull and Williams so far this month have been static models representing generic cars rather than definitive 2023 designs.

Technical director Jan Monchaux said: “We concentrated mainly on the rear part of the car, which opened the door to a lot of other developments we could not use last season.

“It was also clear we had a lot of reliability issues, so there is a lot of things we changed on the car to address that topic.”

Some of the design features reflect the approach taken by Red Bull in 2022, who won a world title double with one of the most dominant seasons in F1 history after a major regulation change before last year.

This is particularly noticeable in the shape of the side-pods, which seem to have been inspired by Red Bull in terms of how they direct airflow to the rear.

“There were better solutions for managing the flow to the diffuser and to rear tyres,” Monchaux said. “The decision we made had left us stuck in a corner.”

He said the changes to the rear of the car allowed a major revision of the cooling system – radiators and so on – which freed up design possibilities with the bodywork.

“We think some of the weaknesses we had from an aerodynamic point of view have been significantly improved thanks to the new potential we unleashed with this new bodywork and the new way of working the floor between the rear tyres,” Monchaux said.

New rules for this season raise the floor edges by 15mm in an attempt to limit aerodynamic bouncing – or “porpoising” – which was experienced by many teams.

Monchaux said the change cost 0.5 seconds per lap but that he had “no doubt” most teams would regain that loss and more.

Team representative Alessandro Alunni Bravi – alongside Monchaux, one of four leaders of the outfit under new chief executive officer Andreas Seidl in a new management structure introduced last month – said: “Our vision is to get closer to the front.

“We don’t want to fix targets. We want to continue our growth and to improve the team in all areas, have a better overall performance throughout the whole season and be more consistent.”

The team, also known by its original name of Sauber, is in the process of being taken over by Audi. Their Alfa Romeo branding will disappear after this season.

Seidl has been put in place to prepare the team for the German car giant’s official entry in 2026 with a new power-unit designed to the regulations that will come into force that year.

Seidl was present at the launch but did not participate in the news conference.

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