2009 Formula 1 cars – Do they look like we expected them to look ?

BMW Sauber

BMW Sauber F1.09 and F1.08 side by side

Most of Formula One fans knew that the 2009 Formula One cars will be quite different than their predecessors. But as teams kept their ideas to themselves we could all only guess how the new cars will look.

I summarized all the main differences between 2009 and 2008 cars back in August in the post 2009 Formula 1 cars look – The most obvious differences. Around the same time this 2009 F1 car visual appeared all over F1 forums:

2009 F1 car visual

2009 Formula 1 Car Visual

The 2009 Formula One cars do look very much like the car on this picture. Whoever created the above visual did some impressive job !

I myself expected the cars to be much leaner than the mean looking beasts of 2008. But when I saw the new cars I was quite surprised by the very basic look of the chassis. The rear wings look quite the way I though they would. The look of the front wings however did suprise me. I expected them to be more like the F1 wings back in early 1990s, only wider. But the 2009 wings came out really are massive, especially on cars like BMW Sauber or the on Honda (tested in Barcelona in November). At least some teams, like McLaren and Ferrari, gave them some elgant curves.

Here are some of the 2008 and 2009 cars side by side:


F60 vs F2008

F60 vs F2008


MP4-24 vs MP4-23

MP4-24 vs MP4-23


FW31 vs FW30

F31 vs F30

BMW Sauber

F1.09 vs F1.08

F1.09 vs F1.08


TF-109 vs TF-108

TF-109 vs TF-108

So do they look like you expected them to look ?

Photos: Daimler Media, BMW Motorsports, Ferrari, Toyota Motor Corporation, Williams/LAT,

8 Comments Post a Comment
  1. Gavin Brown (RubberGoat)No Gravatar says:

    Some look better, some look worse than I expected.

    But when I think about it, the rule changes for 2009 won’t work, because:

    (1) If the cars have downforce levels of the mid-90’s, then they still may not encourage close racing as the mid-90’s F1 races weren’t exactly known for action and overtaking…

    (2) The Front Wings stick out so much that a driver is not going to attempt anything other than a dead-cert move, else they risk losing the front wing (and with the width extending past the wheels now, it will make for a very messy accident).

    I am pessimistic, but let’s wait and see…

    • F1WolfNo Gravatar says:

      … even the drivers are not convinced the new regulations will improve overtaking … we will see, we will see

      I like your because no (2) :-) I think at the beginning the drivers may forget the wings is where is did not use to be. But once few of those fly away as you say, they will all start thinking twice before taking any risks …

  2. KotenokNo Gravatar says:

    Ferrari and BMW keep silence about their new cars, but they seem to be the ones without trouble. They have build pretty different cars, but Kubica is worried about the size of the front wing relative to crashes, Massa is one of the most aggressive drivers at starts also, so he should be concerned about it?
    But what mostly should concern Ferrari are the talks which focus some illegalities on their car, as the free exhaust pipes seen on their car (on technical regulations 2009 they’re banned after the famous issue happened to Kimi Raikkonen last season on the French GP, these pipes can damage seriously other cars or provoke harm to anybody if they melt).

    Renault’s testing has been quite for few days not very successful as the weather conditions didn’t allow to do much on track. Alonso is positive this season with the new car, but there’s a lot of work on understanding it. May be the new concept of Renault complicated to tune??? That happened ages before when aerodynamics were changing every season during 70’s and 80’s, the cars were fast but extremely difficult to find the proper setups.

    I’ve noticed that the only team which still will use bardgeboards is McLaren but minimal ones. In picture it is possible to appreciate that they’re running with previously tested rims (aha so they were for 2009!).

    Also McLaren is the only team that will use a front wing profile with 2 wings, a fixed one and another movable.

    And here is easy to understand how McLaren hide the exhaust pipes integrating them to the livery and sidepods cover.

    But some trouble stopped the MP4/24 on track, not alarming but annoying due a engine problem, but the engine itself hasn’t been changed.

    While I’ve finally could identify where the exhausts of the FW31 are located, sideways and very close to the car’s rear end, just beside the opening behind the engine cover to dispel hot air. The car had some unexpected minimal problems which were fast solved, the reability until now is impressive!

    Toyota keeps using the shark fin, but also is testing another developed wing for 2009 season, not the twisted version seen on their online launch, this one use straignt endplates. So seems they’re developing different front wings depending on the track demands?

    And a special picture!!! The first “fumata bianca” of the year, provided by a Toyota motor. While it’s extraordinary reliable fixed on the Williams, the Toyota guys should worry about with the new rules this season (8 engines season for each car!!).

    Toyota continues surprising us!

    KERS could not appear in their 2009 plans, so that’s not a positive future either…

  3. KotenokNo Gravatar says:

    I’ve forgot to tell one thing about Renault, main trouble for them isn’t at the tests. It’s the design itself, the car’s safety cell seems still not to survive the hard and destructive FIA crash tests (frontal and lateral), Briatore is anyway happy with the current F1 and talks that this is to failure on the monocoque is due to weight means with a mounted KERS unit, this issue will be solved.

    Kotenoks last blog post..F1Wolf left a comment for azril deadman

  4. i think they mostly look like what we were expecting. After the Williams and BMW Sauber gave us the 1st look last year of what a 2009 car would look like, they haven’t really changed that much since they previewed the cars.


2014 Teams and Drivers

Red Bull
Sebastian VETTEL
Fernando ALONSO
Adrian SUTIL
Force India
Sergio PEREZ
Felipe MASSA
Valtteri BOTTAS
Toro Rosso
Daniil KVYAT
Jean Eric VERGNE

2014 F1 Calendar

14-16 March - Australia
28-30 March - Malaysia
4-6 April - Bahrain
18-20 April - China
9-11 May - Spain
22-25 May - Monaco
6-8 June - Canada
20-22 June - Austria
4-6 July - Great Britain
18-20 July - Germany
25-27 July - Hungary
22-24 August - Belgium
5-7 September - Italy
19-21 September - Singapore
3-5 October - Japan
10-12 October - Russia
31 October-2 November - USA
7-9 November - Brazil
21-23 November - Abu Dhabi


2010 Mercedes GP F1 Merchandise
hello world