As their second F1 design, the Haas VF-17 was the first car to have been produced by the team during an active season of competition. The chassis for the 2017 F1 season was launched on February 26th.
Inevitably, questions about whether the team would suffer ‘second-year syndrome’ therefore abounded. But following its surprisingly strong start to the 2016 season, Haas had been able to divert resources to its second campaign earlier than expected.
With Sauber switching to year-old Ferrari power units, Haas became the only one of the Scuderia’s customers to receive up-to-date hardware. They also continued to source as many components as permitted by the rules from the Italian constructor.
Romain Grosjean remained on board as one of the team’s drivers. But Esteban Gutierrez, who had failed to score a point for the team in 21 races, was replaced by Kevin Magnussen.