Formula One car development blog

BMW create front wing with 2.5 panels

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BMW Sauber have displayed a highly competitive pace during the winter season. Quickly after the initial shakedown a new front wing was introduced that makes it hard to decide whether it has 2 or 3 horizontal planes. Yet again BMW Sauber have found a simple solution by making a cut into the upper - second - panel. It is really impossible to predict the effect of this change although the extra split in the middle of the wing will increase the downforce and drag generated under the nose.

McLaren copy Renault's ears

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The test in Barcelona from 12 to 14 February saw McLaren introduce a few new aero bits, including small wings on each side of the monocoque. The idea is copied from Renault who have been running similar devices since the Canadian Grand Prix of 2006. Only available to Alonso during the test, the 'ears' are positioned like an airplane wing and therefore do produce lift instead of downforce. The primary reason for such a compromise is improved airflow towards the rear of the car where ... Read more

Spyker clean up nose area

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The new Spyker car is not only painted in a new colour, it has also been completely redesigned. At this time it even appears to be one of the most aerodynamically changed cars of the field. The nose area has especially required a lot of attention as the team perfected their front suspension to a functional zero keel design. The visual similarities with a twin keel originate from the turning vanes, located at the exact same position as where the keels are usually located. The new lay... Read more

What used to be a barge board...

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Just 15 years ago, a barge board was a vertically mounted plate to guide air more fluently around the air intake area. Several teams did not use such a panel as they found it not beneficial. In sharp contrast are today's F1 cars. The F2007 for instance is equipped with a mixture of panels in the barge board area. While preserving the cut edges at the upper side of the main board, smaller turning vanes have been added to improve airflow. Especially remarkable is a small carbon in bet... Read more

Toyota stay ahead as king of fins

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In recent years the Toyota cars have become known for their chunky car layout and the use of an incredible amount of fins and flaps all over the body. Although the TF107 looks like an improvement compared to the TF106, the engineers still seem to love to develop fins to fit to the car in every possible area. Looking at the image - a close-up of the outer part of the front wing - shows the regular front wing with above it an extra - red - element, similar most of the other teams by n... Read more

Distinct and narrow nose for new Honda

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The new Honda has just been launched in its black testing livery but it is already quite obvious the car has gone through serious aerodynamic changes. In fact the team have been following their own filosophy. As a result, their newest creation does not really resemble any other car. The nose cone in particular was made thinner and higher than the Red Bull RB3, the Renault R27 or the McLaren MP4-22. As more air will pass aside of the nose and therefore flow onto the suspension arms, ... Read more

Renault's all in one mirror and sidepod panel

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The new Renault R27 mirrors are one of the most eye-catching novelties on the 2007 contenders. After Ferrari came up with the idea to put the mirrors on the outer side or the sidepod, several teams investigated the idea. Together with the sidepod panels that Renault introduced at Canada last year they make for a good combination of minimising drag. The new mirror position is especially beneficial because it is behind the front wheel and not visible on a front view of the car (and th... Read more

Front end development for BMW Sauber

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The new BMW Sauber has just been released and appears to have undergone a serious diet over the winter. The upper part of the image shows the new F1.07 and compares it to the F1.06 of 2006. The team have visibly put great effort in the front end as the nose has become smaller and thinner than previously. While the tip of the nose isn't much higher, the monocoque is higher to better fit the suspension. Although this might well increase the centre of gravity of the car, Toyota have al... Read more

Extraordinary zero keel for F2007

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Contrary to the belief of most people, Ferrari designed a zero keel front suspension layout for their brand new F2007. The upper wishbones are very thick at their base, even more so than last year. Because of the dimensions of the upper wishbone, the lower one has been moved backwards and was made very thin. It attached directly to the monocoque as it fits the description of a zero-keel car. The picture shows that there are actually two thin fins extending to the ground which act so... Read more

2006: Carbon rings (yet another saga)

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After the fuss with the flexible front wings and while there was still much going on about the mass dampers, Ferrari was in the midst of developing new carbon rings. At first, the rings in the rear wheels were actually ducts, but already at their second appearance the ducts had become simple circular panels that were glued into the rim. At Turkey (see image on the left) the wheels were almost completely covered and in Italy different rings were used during the race. Pat Symonds espe... Read more