Ferrari's efforts to supplant Red Bull at the top of the F1 tree may have suffered a temporary setback amid reports that its 2012 car failed the mandatory FIA crash test.
Several sources, led by Finland's Turun Sanomat
, claimed that the car - currently carrying the factory number 663 - was submitted for testing several weeks ago, but had to reworked with additional structural reinforcement, before it could be returned for a second attempt in the coming week. Under revised 2012 regulations, all cars have to have passed the stringent assessment before being allowed to take part in pre-season testing, something that both Caterham and Force India have managed to do.
Ferrari team principal Stefano Domenicali has already warned Ferrari fans not to expect an attractive car this season, as the Scuderia attempts to produce a machine capable of closing the gap to Red Bull and McLaren.
“It's definitely different, because it represents a clear break with the past in terms of the design philosophy," he commented at this week's Wroom
media event in Italy, "It's not that pretty, because the shape defined by the technical regulations does not leave much scope, but, and this is what counts really, our hopes are that it is at the very least quick!”
“I asked our engineers, as far back as last summer to look into every little nook and cranny of the rules to push it to the limit, but up until we see the other cars we will not know if we have taken it to the limit or are within it. To really understand the hierarchy, we will have to wait for qualifying in Melbourne.”