The new Lotus T128 was revealed on the internet early this morning as the team found a way to upstage the launch of the Lotus Renault GP contender later today.
The most intriguing thing about the car is that having announced that it would be called the TL11 – thus seeming to avoid any aggro over using an ‘official’ Lotus type number – the team had gone ahead and called it the T128.
This year’s car should be a huge step relative to its predecessor. The team has switched from Cosworth to Renault power but more importantly has an ‘off the shelf’ Red Bull gearbox and hydraulic system, which will massively improve performance and reliability.
However the main advantage comes from the fact that the design and engineering team has had a proper shot at creating a car, whereas the T127 was done in a massive rush by a group of ex-Toyota designers working in an office in Cologne. This year they have had the time to do the job they wanted.
One thing the pictures do reveal is that the car has a similar ‘spike’ rollhoop arrangement to last year’s Mercedes, something that was believed to have been addressed by rule changes for this year.