The underestimated Public Relation Managers - where would be Ferraris sales without them - in teh cellar ?????
Coming up
Ferraris   by Serial Number
Maseratis   by Serial Number
Art & More
Address Book
Price Development
Parts and    Restoration
F2004 Presentation
The underestimated Public Relation Managers - where would be Ferraris sales without them - in teh cellar ?????

02.05.2014, 00:44:34 cet

Top of Page

Maranello / Italy, January 26

Every other year in January the Scuderia Ferrari celebrates the presentation of the Formula 1 car in its hometown of Maranello. In 2004, Monday, January 26 was the day. As usual, the Scuderia did launch its car for the 2004 season later than most of the other teams: Toyota and Jaguar had unveiled their cars exactly one week earlier, Sauber had invited the international press for January 12 already, and BMW-Williams had been ready on January 6 already. However, the new Renault had its debut three days after the new Ferrari. McLaren-Mercedes’ MP4-19 has been seen testing on various circuits since November already.

This time, the event was held at the “Vecchia Meccanica”, a former production hall right behind the office building inside the factory compound. Not only hundreds of photographers, journalists and guests of honour had been invited to the newly erected auditiorium, but also between 100 and 150 Ferrari owners from all over the world. One could register for the event via Ferrari’s owners website (; for 384,-€ per person, one could buy a package that included a welcome drink on the Pista di Fiorano, a very short night tour of the factory by bus (!), a dinner in the factory-owned “Cavallino” restaurant (all in Sunday evening), a stay in a hotel in Sassuolo and of course the access to the presentation ceremony. As usual Ferrari did display the current production range. The 360 Spider, the Challenge Stradale and the 575M Maranello were presented in a Rosso Corsa livery, as was the latest “baby” of the marque, the 612 Scaglietti. A strange choice for this HUGE 2+2 coupe… The Enzo Ferrari that is still in production, but of course sold out, was missing in this display, but instead on could admire the 575 GTC and the new (2004) 360 GTC.

Always amazing for foreigners is the variety of the invited guests of honour: They are not only officials of suppliers and sponsors, of the mother company Fiat or from the world of Formula One, but also officials of the state and local government, the mayors of Modena and Maranello, high ranking military and police officials and even members of the clergy. Their presence demonstrates the ranking of the presentation of Ferrari’s new Formula 1 car in the Italian daily life: About the same as a state visit!

The name of the new “red goddess”, as the Italians call the current Ferrari Formula 1 car, is very simple: F2004. Although the media had named the forthcoming Ferrari exactly like this in advance, one wasn’t absolutely sure whether Ferrari wouldn’t choose another designation for the new one which would have left the way of the established nomenclature. Especially the fact that the F2004 is the 50th Formula 1 car that left the Gestione Sportiva would have been a good reason to call the 2004 car ”F1-50” or something like that. But… the Scuderia chose to keep up with the well-known structure of designations.

Ferrari’s director of communications and marketing, Dr. Antonio Ghini, opened the event — surprisingly — right in time at 11.00 h. After a couple of words by Ferrari’s sporting director Jean Todt, Michael Schumacher, Rubens Barrichello and Luca Badoer lifted the red cover that had hidden the new F2004. It instantly became obvious that evolution instead of revolution had been the aim of the F2004’s designers — but why should one change a winning car? From the outside, the new car is very similar to its predecessor, the F2003-GA. Minor changes become obvious after an intense inspection or comparison only. Some experts and journalists had been expecting revolutionary aerodynamics to the car’s nose, as seen on the FW26 von BMW-Williams. Ferrari didn’t go this way.

The measurements of the F2004 are identical to the ones found on the F2003-GA, except the wheelbase that lost five centimetres. Despite of the fact that both the chassis and the gearbox of the F2004 lost weight compared to the components in the F2003-GA, the overall weight of the F2004 is slightly higher (605 kg). The most striking changes can be found on the F2004’s side boxes: The flaps and wings on them have been substantially re-designed. The side panels of the rear wing were enlarged according to an FIA regulation demanding more space for sponsor stickers. The internal project code of the F2004 is 655, the new V10 engine is type 053.

Chief designer Rory Byrne confirmed that some design elements are still to be changed prior to the first Grand Prix in Australia in March — thus starting speculations about WHAT will be changed.

Chief engine designer Paolo Martinelli had a tough job to do: Changes in the FIA regulations demand that each driver uses only ONE engine per race weekend, so for qualifying AND race. So, the new 053 had to be slightly more powerful (it probably produces about 890 hp), but at the same time it needs to be much more durable.

The Scuderia’s technical director Ross Brawn said that he was proud to present the best Ferrari Formula 1 car they had ever built... so far!

After all, everybody chose rather moderate words to describe the forthcoming season. It will be hard, tough and demanding — that’s the punch line. It will not be easy to become World Champion for the fifth (driver) or sixth (team) consecutive year, but the Scuderia is at least optimistic.

Well, they should: In the first test at Fiorano, Michael Schumacher took the new F2004 to a new track record of 0:55’999…

Andreas Birner

Ferrari Formula 1 F2004, Photo Andreas Birner
Paying Guests - FOC members had the chance to participate
360 GTC s/n 2052
575 GTC s/n 2106
612 Scaglietti s/n 135860
Ferrari Formula 1 F2004
The underestimated Public Relation Managers - where would be Ferraris sales without them - in teh cellar ?????
Created with StudioLine
 Next page
 Previous page