Jerez tests: Lotus and Williams

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Lotus F1’s 2015 challenger, the E23 hybrid (new image above), arrived in Jerez today after firing-up for the first time at the team’s Enstone base on Saturday 31 January. The car is now undergoing its build programme overnight and throughout Monday, with the first significant running expected for Tuesday 3 February.

Here’s a little piece of info the team came up with in an idle moment and felt it had to share – what it calls its ‘E23 numbers’:

0 – the time taken in seconds for the gearbox of the E23 to change gear (drive is never lost during the gearshift)
0.04 – how much faster in seconds the E23 goes each lap due to the reducing weight as the car burns fuel (not accounting for tyre degradation)
1.6 – the time in seconds for the E23 to decelerate from 100 km/h to a standstill
4 – the number of power units allocated to each driver in 2015
4.9 – how many seconds it takes for the E23 to reach 200 km/h from a standstill
6 – the number of consecutive races each gearbox must survive before it can be changed without suffering a five-place grid penalty
8 forward and 1 reverse – the number of gears in the E23’s gearbox
15 – how many hours it takes for a complete rebuild of the car at the track with 12 mechanics
87.75 – the impact energy in kilojoules that must be withstood by the nose of the car when it is crash tested by the FIA; the same amount of energy as would be required to stop a 4 tonne elephant moving towards you at 24km/h
102 – the weight in Kg subjected to the end of the front wing by the FIA; it cannot move more than 10mm
220 – the pressure in Bar the cars hydraulic system works at; a road car tyre is about 1.8 Bar
702 – the minimum dry weight of the car in kilograms
1,100 – the temperature in degrees Celsius of the exhaust gases when the car is at full throttle
1,200 – in degrees Celsius, this is the temperature a brake disc can reach during the race
2,500 – the number of gear changes the drivers have to make during an average Grand Prix
12,500 – the number of technical drawings produced by the time of the E23 car build (more than any other car from Enstone)
30,000 – the number of individual parts that make up each E23
125,000 – the max rotational speed in RPM of the MGU-H
250,000 – the amount of man hours that have gone into the design of the E23.

Meanwhile, the other teams have been hard at it on track, with Vettel (now at Ferrari) and Ericsson (Sauber) topping the lap times, although these are pretty meaningless.

 

Here are Williams’ results from day one:

Driver: Valtteri Bottas
Chassis / Engine: FW37-01/PU106B Hybrid
Location: Jerez de la Frontera 4.428km
Objectives: New component, systems and reliability checks
Weather: Dry and sunny
Air and track temps: 7 – 14ºC / 9 – 20ºC

Rod Nelson, Chief Test and Support Engineer:

“We have gone through our normal winter test programmes today and have solved any issues that have arisen. We lost a bit of time this morning but once on track, Valtteri clocked up 73 laps. We have new hardware on the car and there is a new power unit, and all of these have to be checked and tested whilst we are running before we can start looking at performance. Jerez isn’t too representative as a circuit as the surface is so abrasive, this limits the amount of useful performance work we can carry out. We are very satisfied with the first day and are looking forward to tomorrow.”

And driver, Valtteri Bottas:

“The day started off a bit slow, but it turned out to be a really good one. After that initial set-back we didn’t have a single issue with the FW37, which is impressive for the first day with a new car. We started off on shorter runs before longer runs later this afternoon, including one run that was significant considering again that it’s only the first day. The car was consistent, so it’s a really good start to the week and we are pleased that it’s still a step up from the car we had at the end of last season. We know we have a lot to learn and improve, but we also know where these gains can come from, and have work to do with the car performance and the power unit. There are a lot of strengths in this car and we’ve made good progress in just one day, so I am very pleased.”

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