Marussia debut KERS-equipped MR02 as testing begins 05 Feb 2013
Marussia revealed their 2013 challenger, the Cosworth-powered MR02, to the media on Tuesday morning, at the start of the opening day of pre-season testing in Jerez, Spain. The Russian-owned team say the car is a comprehensive evolution of its predecessor, boosted by KERS for the first time.
Unlike the MR01, which was conceived solely using CFD (Computational Fluid Dynamics) technology, the MR02s design philosophy has also employed wind-tunnel development, as part of Marussias technical partnership with McLaren Applied Technologies.
We embark on the first pre-season test of 2013 feeling very positive about our new car - the MR02 - and what lies ahead in this next important chapter in the development of the Marussia F1 Team, said team principal John Booth. Whilst we have experienced some changes over the winter, the one area of stability we have enjoyed is the one that is most important to our progression from here, the design of our 2013 race car, led by our technical director Pat Symonds.
The incremental steps we were taking in the latter half of last season gave us the confidence to not only fight hard for 10th place in the constructors championship, but to feel encouraged by our overall design direction, which was the basis for the car we are fielding here in Jerez today.
The heart of the MR02 bears the most significant area of redevelopment due to the requirement to accommodate the KERS installation, support for which was provided by Williams Advanced Engineering. This created a busier-than-usual programme for Marussias designers as they sought to integrate the system whilst, at the same time, reducing the overall weight of the chassis, maintaining stiffness and meeting the demands of the mandatory FIA crash tests.
The MR02 will be powered by Cosworths CA2013K engine, while Marussias transmission technology partner Xtrac brings an evolution of the 2012 gearbox design, with particular attention paid to increasing the installation stiffness of the suspension.
A key area of the aerodynamic development of the MR02 has been achieving enhanced cooling efficiency and hence improving air flow over the rear of the car. This is clearly evident in the new sidepod design solution and a more aggressive Coanda-style exhaust, which Marussia believe will be a key area for development in 2013. As is likely to be the trend up and down the pit lane, the team will field their major aerodynamic updates in time for the final pre-season test, to allow for maximum tunnel proving time.
Such was the progressive nature of Marussias 2012 development programme, particularly in areas such as the front and rear suspension, certain elements of the MR01s mechanical design have been carried over to the MR02 to facilitate maximum focus on other major considerations, KERS in particular.
We are confident that the MR02 is the product of evolving elements of last years package whilst integrating the new KERS system, continued Booth. It was said many times during 2012 that, notwithstanding the impressive steps we were taking in other areas of our development, KERS - or the lack of it - was the defining factor in determining our position relative to our immediate competitors. KERS was however a strategic omission from our package until now; we opted to place the emphasis on aerodynamics, so that when we were in a position to bring the system to the car, we already had the strongest possible basis and its integration would be relatively straightforward.
"Thus far, this has certainly been the case, as our trackside engineering team have spent the winter refining their tools and preparing for the addition of KERS to ensure we can hit the ground running with effect from this week and use the short period of testing we have to get the car optimised for Melbourne.
It is early days in our pre-season development programme but there is a great deal of optimism amongst the team for what lies ahead. With that in mind, we all look forward to seeing the MR02 make its on-track debut later this morning.
Marussia now embark on the first pre-season test of the year with a four-day programme at the Circuito de Jerez. British rookie Max Chilton, currently the teams only confirmed driver for 2013, will put the new car through its paces for the first time when the programme gets underway on Tuesday morning.
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