Pirelli launches its new range of 2018 Formula 1 tyres in Abu Dhabi, which adds two extra compounds and colours next year, as well as fresh constructions, compounds and working ranges across the renewed family. These are the main points towards 2018:
All the compounds are a step softer than this year, making these the fastest tyres in Formula 1 history.Brand new for 2018 is a tyre that sits below the ultrasoft: an even softer compound called P Zero Pink hypersoft, which is coloured pink and is the softest Formula 1 tyre that Pirelli has ever made. This new compound will be suitable for circuits where maximum mechanical grip is required, such as Monaco. Also new for 2018 is the hard compound, which will now be coloured ice blue. Another new entry is the superhard, remaining orange as a symbol of the very hardest choice available in the range. In total, there will now be seven slick P Zero compounds, which together with the new Cinturato intermediates and wets expand the 2018 range to nine brightly-coloured Pirelli tyres. Compounds and constructions have been redesigned for each tyre, in keeping with Pirelli’s philosophy of renewing the range every year since the Italian firm returned to Formula 1 in 2011. There are new working ranges across the entire family as well, which together with the increased number of compounds, will allow tyre nominations that are more specifically suited to each race next year. For Pirelli and the Teams, this also means that there can be more flexibility and variation in the tyre choices, leading to extra opportunities when it comes to formulating creative race strategies. The brand new pink tyre, which the teams will all sample for the first time in just five days, was named the P Zero Pink hypersoft following a poll across Pirelli’s social media channels, endorsed by the sport’s leading personalities, who invited fans to choose a new name after the Brazilian Grand Prix.
Mario Isola, Head of Car Racing: “Compared to this year, when the tyres grew by 25% to fit a brand-new generation of cars, the changes for next year are less far-reaching. However, we’re pleased to present some important innovations with softer and faster compounds across the range: including the new hypersoft. We realised that, under the unique circumstances of this year, some of our 2017 compounds were perhaps conservative: the tyres we have created for 2018 addresses this, in line with the objective of having around two pit stops at most races. However, the fundamental design concept of the tyres hasn’t changed next year, preserving the attributes that all drivers have appreciated this year and allowing them to push hard from the start to the finish of each stint. The new range consists of faster tyres that should lead to even harder and more spectacular racing in 2018.”
Following the two-day test in Abu Dhabi, the drivers will have the chance to sample the 2018 tyres on next season’s cars for the first time during the two official four-day pre-season tests in Barcelona from February 26 – March 1 and March 6-9.
Further details on Pirelli’s testing plans for next season, in preparation for 2019, will be revealed at the start of next season.