2021 Ferrari will be the SF21


No sooner has a disappointing 2020 season come to an end for Ferrari, than an optimistic Mattia Binotto is giving insight into the Maranello outfit's 2021 plans.

The new car, designated the SF21, will be unveiled ahead of the 3-day pre-season test, as the team seeks to move on from its worst season since 1980.

"It's a very simple name, because we believe that next year is a transition to 2022," Binotto told journalists in a virtual lunch meeting. "So let's keep SF21 the name of the car. It will be certainly partially a frozen car, same chassis as 2020.

"We will organize differently the unveiling of the car next year," he continued. "We will organize first an event where we will present the team and our drivers to our fans, to our partners and to the journalists.

"But we may organize a second event," he added, "and that could be directly at Barcelona winter testing, where we will unveil the car. And that will be somehow done in a different way."

Binotto has previously confirmed that in its efforts to put the nightmare of 2020 well and truly behind it, the team is working on an all-new engine.

"I can confirm the engine is running well on the dyno," he said. "I think that in terms of performance, it has progressed well... significantly I think compared to what has been 2020.

"I think that we will be back to being competitive as a power unit," he continued. "I think we will not be the worst in the field, and that is the feeling I got from the figures I've seen on the dyno. But I cannot know what the others are certainly doing, or how much they have progressed."

However, other than a poor engine, Ferrari's 2020 efforts were hindered by the poor aerodynamic efficiency of the SF1000.

"We try to do our best in order to address at least the weaknesses of the 2020 car for next year," he said. "In addressing the weaknesses, I mentioned the power unit more than once. But the drag of the car was very, very high in 2020. And I think that looking at the 2021 car, the drag has been somehow certainly addressed."

Finishing 6th in the 2020 standings, its worst finish since 1980, Binotto admits the Maranello outfit's target for next season is a modest third.

"Third is not impossible," he said, "I think that should be our minimum objective for next season."

Whether this will be enough to appease the tifosi or even the Ferrari board is one thing, but the Italian media is another matter entirely.

For much of the year Binotto has been the target of the Italian press who have called for a new team boss to be installed. The recent retirement of Louis Camilleri, who had championed Binotto, having added to the pressure on the man who holds one of the most volatile jobs in sport.

"There are no changes in our plans, no changes in what is our future," he replied, when asked how Camilleri’s departure might impact the team.

"I know that my time is not infinite, certainly," he admitted. "I am pretty aware of the fact that as a team we need to do well and myself as well as principal to do well in the next seasons."

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Published: 19/12/2020
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