Ferrari launch car hoping to push Mercedes for world title

Rome (AFP) –


Ferrari became the latest Formula One team to unveil their new car, the SF-16H, for the 2016 season as they look to push Mercedes for the constructors' championship.

The Italian team launched the car via a live stream on their website on Friday, with team principal Maurizio Arrivabene and drivers Sebastian Vettel and Kimi Raikkonen part of the unveiling.

Mercedes have dominated the last two years in F1, with Lewis Hamilton winning his second and third drivers' titles, but Ferrari closed the gap last season as four-time world champion Vettel claimed three Grand Prix victories.

Ferrari, who have won 16 constructors' titles, finished a disappointing fourth in 2014, and former team principal Stefano Domenicali was replaced by Arrivabene as a result.

The team were 275 points behind Mercedes in second place last year, but still managed 216 points more than the previous season.

Arrivabene wants to see further progress, and more lasting title challenges.

"I think this year, we need to push a bit more. We would like to fight until the end for the championship," he said.

"I know that is not going to be easy, because our competitors are not sleeping, but we are committed to do our best."

The SF-16H features more white than in recent years, and also has a shorter nose.

The engine cover seems slimmer, suggesting that Ferrari have been working on engine cooling over the winter.