Marussia Virgin Racing MVR-02 Cosworth
Virgin Racing continued their path of virtual design by Nick Wirth, and the team are proud yet again to have designed this car solely by CFD. The car was unveiled on 7 February at the BBC TV centre and immediately showed great resemblance to its predecessor.
Nonetheless, there are a few striking features that are quite different from any other car fielded in 2011. First of all, the nose has not been raised, and as such the MVR-02 has the lowest nosecone of all 2011 cars. The nose did get slightly wider though, and the bulges on the upper side have grown a bit. This allowed the team to slightly increase the angle of the push rod, allowing for easier and more precise suspension adjustments.
At the centre of the car, the sidepods are at first rather similar, but nothing is less true. In fact, the air inlets are made aggressively small for increased aerodynamic efficiency, while the undercut is impressive. This was partly made possible because the team have chosen not to run KERS.
As the 2011 launches were mostly about the position of the exhausts, Virgin Racing came up with yet another alternative, as they have very long exhaust pipes that join together right before the diffuser. With has designed them as such that part of the exhaust gases blow through the diffuser's starter hole, effectively creating an open fronted blown diffuser.
Nick Wirth further explained at the launch that his team have also focused to eliminate some of the problem areas of the 2010 Virgin Racing VR-01: "“We have addressed every single issue that troubled us last year, but in our own unique digital way. For example, the hydraulics and gearbox oil problems of last year have resulted in us doing more CFD in these areas alone than we used in the entire aero design program our first digital race-winning sportscar in 2008. In Abu Dhabi we took the opportunity to prove out these digital improvements by successfully track-testing a number of systems for the MVR-02."
On a side note, the MVR-02 was designed to be the same length as the original VR-01 chassis whilst retaining the full-size fuel tank after that had caused problems for the team as well in 2010.
Construction: Virgin Racing carbon fibre construction monocoque and nosebox
Gearbox: Virgin Racing precision aluminium construction with 7-speed, longitudinally Mounted internals
Overall Length: Approx 5200 mm
Designation: Cosworth CA2011
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