The Sauber F1 Team launched its new car for F1 2012 today with the unveiling of the C31 taking place at the Jerez de la Frontera circuit in Spain.
Kamui Kobayashi and Sergio Perez took the wraps of the Ferrari-powered car, which like most its rivals - at least those seen so far - features a stepped nose. The reveal comes the day before the first official pre-season test at the circuit, although Sauber will do some initial laps today for 'filming purposes', which will serve as a shakedown of sorts.
2012 will mark the Swiss-based outfits 20th at the top level and like in 2011, Esteban Gutierrez will act as the official test and reserve driver.
“We are looking forward to another season working with our young and talented drivers,” said team boss, Peter Sauber following the launch. “Kamui will be competing in his third full season in F1. Last year we asked him to take on leadership responsibilities within the team and he has grown into the role.
“With his rookie season behind him Sergio is now approaching his second season, which is often the most difficult in a driver's F1 career. Both drivers have huge potential and will work with the same race engineers as in 2011 to continue developing that promise.
“Esteban will be competing full-time in GP2 in his second season in the category and has shown - most recently in the November test - that he could also step into the car for a Grand Prix, if required.”
“We're aiming to start the new season as strongly as we did in 2011, but then also to maintain this level of performance throughout the year,” he added.
“The Sauber C31-Ferrari boasts a large number of promising new developments, but in other areas it is a systematic further development of last year's car. Our goal is to finish regularly in the points so as to put ourselves in a significantly better position in the World Championship,” he concluded.
TO SEE PICTURES FROM THE SAUBER C31-FERRARI LAUNCH, CLICK HERE
More images will be added over the course of the day.