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August 12, 2017

Die-cast: Looksmart’s 2016 Ferrari SF16-H

by Mark Savage

Looksmart delivers sharp Vettel Ferrari from 2016 Australian GP …Ferrari SF-16 F1 racer

Sebastian Vettel and Ferrari joining forces seems a deal worked in heaven, or at least Maranello, which to the tifosi is one and the same.

Vettel is a four-time world F1 champ and Ferrari has the most wins of any F1 team ever, 227. So when Vettel came aboard three seasons ago the tifosi’s dreams of another F1 title grew quickly.  By 2016 they were expecting wins, if not a title, and the new Ferrari SF16-H looked to be the car to do it.

Looksmart, a fairly new Italian die-cast maker, has just begun making gorgeous 1/18-scale resin models and this version of the SF16-H is as it appeared in its debut race, the 2016 Australian Grand Prix. The review car is a replica of Vettel’s ride that day. He finished third. Replicarz provided the review model.

The History

Scuderia Ferrari, started by Enzo Ferrari in 1929 to be Alfa Romeo’s factory racing team, has been successful in Formula 1 racing since its inception. It’s the only F1 team to compete in each season since F1 was formed in 1950.Ferrari SF16-H F1 racer

Ferrari has won 16 constructors’ championships and its drivers have won 15 driver championships, most recently Kimi Raikkonen in 2007.

The SF16-H (SF for Scuderia Ferrari, and H for hybrid) ran the entire 2016 season. Vettel had the best results for the team although the car never won a race. Vettel notched seven podiums including three second-place finishes, while Raikkonen had four podiums and two seconds. The team was third in the constructor’s contest.

However, this car led to the SF70-H which is proving much more successful. It already has won three F1 races as of this writing, putting Vettel atop the F1 driver’s championship.

The 2016 car was designed by Simone Resta and used a carbon fiber and honeycomb composite chassis. Power came from a 1.6-liter turbocharged V6 with an electric motor powered by kinetic and thermal energy recovery systems.Ferrari SF16-H F1 racer

The Model

This is a closed body resin model, which means you can’t lift off the bodywork to see the engine and chassis. But it’s stunningly executed and will brighten any display case in its red and white livery.

Finish is excellent with high-gloss red and white paint bathing the model and the black suspension pieces, all aerodynamically flat, feature a carbon fiber textured finish. Plus the whole under tray and diffuser areas look to be wafer-thin carbon fiber as on the racer. Looksmart also includes thin struts and fasteners on the tray holding it in place.Ferrari SF16-H F1 racer

Three tiny antenna sprout from the car’s nose and in case you’re not up on your F1 car designs, there’s no windscreen any more.

Detailing in the many and various wings and winglets is fantastic. For instance, up front the nose wings feature five verticals and three levels of horizontal wing. All are beautifully painted with the proper Shell V-Power and Santander logos and there’s a Ferrari prancing horse logo on the noses’ tip.

The car has Vettel’s white No. 5 on the nose. This was a year before F1 ruled that numbers must be larger and in several locations to help fans tell team cars apart.Ferrari SF16-H F1 racer

In back the wing is tall but narrow with huge side panels that extend down to the under tray. There’s also a large chrome center exhaust that protrudes from the sleek engine bay cover. Indeed, the whole car looks to be sculpted.

Looksmart includes delicate side mirrors, beautiful rubber slicks with Pirelli P Zero markings in red and the driver is wonderfully realistic looking, right down to all the patches on his uniform and sponsor names on his helmet.

A well-executed model of a fast red F1 car, what’s not to like?

Vital Stats: 2016 Ferrari SF16-H Australian GP (Vettel)Ferrari SF16-H F1 racer

Maker: Looksmart

Scale: 1/18

Stock No.: LS18F104

MSRP: $199.99




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