Ferrari has considered 'dozens' of noses
Ferrari technical director James Allison says his team has looked at dozens of different nose types for the new F14 T, but has played down the importance of the nose for overall performance.
Allison joined the team from Lotus last year after originally working on his old team's unique twin-pronged design. Ferrari has a very different design, but Allison said the team has been looking at several options over the winter.
"On the noses we've already looked at dozens and dozens of noses of all different shapes and sizes," he said. "Like any other part of the car that is free for us to develop we will keep looking at it because we do.
"Why the [current] nose? Well if you look around you in the pit lane you will see that there's a different nose on every car and there's not too much similarity between any of the cars. The reason for that is the nose rules allow quite a lot geometrical freedom and you go off exploring that freedom.
"The reason there isn't a single solution is it's not actually that sensitive an area, so there are lots and lots of different solutions that work. I came from another team before that has a very aggressive solution; I worked on that with the team and this car has got another solution but there's really not much in that. They're just things that are good to talk about because they are right up at the front of the car."
Allison said the packaging of the engine is far more important to the performance of the car and he believes Ferrari has done an "exquisite" job.
"The engines - if and when you guys get to see them when they're not completely covered in heat shields - you'll see that they are incredibly busy compared with the things that we've been used to looking at in the last few years," he said. "This car has been rather exquisitely packaged by the team that worked on it more than two years ago and brought it to this point. So it's very neat, very small and when you've got that much mechanical complexity to fit in then making it in a small package is very neat.
"On the aerodynamic side of course we are doing what we've always been doing which is looking for downforce, trying to minimise drag and trying to make sure that that downforce is deliverable to a track in a way that is driveable.
"The overall philosophy of the car is, on the power unit side, that everybody has got the same amount of fuel; whoever can make the engine most efficient will have the most power, so the engine guys have been working long and hard for that. At the same time they've been aggressive and bending over backwards for us on the chassis side to make sure they produce an engine that is packageable, that allows itself to be cooled with radiators that are manageably packageable on the car. You see our car has got quite a neat cooling package and the bodywork is quite small - that's part of what the engine guys have done to provide that for us."