Ferrari unveiled its fifty ninth Formula 1 race car named F138 that will take part in the 2013 season of the Formula 1 World Championship. Its name comes from the year that it was used plus the number of cylinders in the engine it is using. The name also commemorates the last season that the V8 engine configuration will be used.
The F138 can be seen as the evolution of last year's F2012 as it constitutes the Scuderia’s interpretation of this year’s Technical and Sporting Regulations. Although they are substantially the same, every single part of the car has been revised in order to maximize performance.
The design philosophy of the suspension layout has not changed and it continues to use pull-rods both front and rear, but it has been refined to the limit, in order to gain as much aerodynamic advantage as possible, especially at the rear. The bodywork elements have been redesigned to allow for changes to the positioning and layout of the exhausts. The dynamic air intake, mounted above the cockpit has been redesigned, as have been the intakes to the side pods, which in turn have also been optimized in aerodynamic terms, while maintaining unchanged the overall cooling system.
The rear of the car is much narrower and more tapered on the lower part. The configuration of the front and rear wings derives directly from the last versions used on the F2012, partly because development of that car ran all the way to the final race of last season.
However, the aerodynamic elements shown on the car are only those from the initial phase of development: significant modifications will be introduced in the weeks leading up to the first race and a busy development program is already planned.
There are detailed changes to the design of the brake ducts, both front and rear end work has been carried out with Brembo on optimizing the overall braking system. During both the design and production stages, great attention has been paid to weight reduction and on increasing rigidity.
The engine on the F138 is an evolution of the one fitted to the car last year, engine work was intensified on ensuring that the engine’s performance level remained as high as possible throughout the lifecycle of each power unit, which has now reached an average life of three races.
The kinetic energy recovery system(KERS) retains its location in the lower-central part of the car, a strategic choice which has always been adopted by the team, partly with the aim of ensuring maximum safety.