The American Haas F1 Team introduced their new Formula 1 car to the media at their U.S. Headquarters in Kannapolis, N.C. on Wednesday (Feb.14). The car is called the VF-18, and it was widely distributed by the squad’s online websites on Twitter, Facebook and other outlets.
The word “V” is meant for vertical while the terminology for the “VF” is very first. That’s what the team also used for its previous two models, the VF-16 and VF-17.
The main change in this year’s car is the addition of the halo in the cockpit and reduction in the shark fin, which was eliminated from most F1 cars.
Bigger. Better. Faster. Lighter.
— Haas F1 Team (@HaasF1Team) February 14, 2018
“The biggest part of the car’s evolution was the addition of the halo,” Gunther Steiner, team principal of Haas F1 Team, said, per Autoweek. “It took quite a bit of study by the aerodynamicists, but designers had to work hard to modify the chassis, so the halo could survive the mandated loads. The total minimum weight of the car increased because of the halo, and there’s a higher center of gravity simply because of the halo’s position. But everyone is in the same boat.”
Haas continues to use both drivers that were in the cockpit from last season. Dane Kevin Magnussen returns for his second year in the cockpit while Frenchman Romain Grosjean will be back for a third time.
Haas F1 will begin its 2018 season testing at the Circuit de Barcelona- Catalunya in Spain. They’ll run from Feb. 26 to March 1 before returning to the track on March 6.