Ferrari has confessed to taking more risks with this year's car than previous cars, after unveiling a fairly aggressive F2012 at Maranello on Friday.
Although the most commented-on feature is its stepped nose, the most radical feature is that it is the first car in Formula 1 since Minardi in 2001 to feature front pullrod suspension. Furthermore, the team has worked hard on its packaging at the sidepods and the rear of the car and try and make the aerodynamic gains it thinks it needs to get ahead of Red Bull Racing.
Technical director Pat Fry confirmed that Ferrari had deliberately decided on an aggressive approach for this year's car, and had not been afraid of pushing the boundaries.
"A lot of people have said a lot of things, and it is a bit of a step away from where we have been," he said. "Certainly we have taken a few more risks on the basic car layout and things like that, but all in all everyone has done a good job. But we need to knuckle down and start pushing for the upgrades for the first race and through the year."
Ferrari is planning a major development package to be introduced for the final test at Barcelona in March, as well as further improvements for the first race in Australia. The F2012 has very little carry over from last year's car, and there are some big philosophical changes in the design approach.
Chief designer Nikolas Tombazis said the team had built on lessons of last year, as well as coming up with new ideas.
"The front wing is evolution of the wing that we introduced in the last races of last season," he explained. "We introduced it there to have some initial lessons about this topic. We understood quite a lot and had further developments, and there will be further developments for the third test and before the first race of the season.
"The nose has an ungainly shape on the top, and that is the result of the regulation that requires us to have the nose quite low but the dynamic desire to have the lower part of chassis as high as possible. Even though it is not aesthetically pleasing, we believe it is the most efficient aerodynamic solution for that area of the car.
"One of the innovations of the car is the front suspension. For mainly aerodynamic reasons, we have selected a pullrod solution. It took us quite a lot of work from the structural and design offices and vehicle dynamics department to regain all the mechanical characteristics we wanted the suspension to have. I believe we have achieved that, but we also think we have found an aerodynamic advantage from this solution."
Ferrari has also worked on a different sidepod philosophy to improve the aerodynamic benefits of the turning vanes. The rear of the car is also tighter, and the gearbox package made narrower. The team has also abandoned its pushrod rear suspension configuration in favor of the pullrod concept favored by a number of rival squads.