Formula One car development blog

Ferrari revives the blown wheelnut

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Ferrari have revived the blown wheelnut system by racing it at today's Chinese Grand Prix. Tried at the two day Bahrain test 2 weeks ahead of the Chinese race, the team found its system to be beneficial in managing front tyre wake.

Part of the system are much larger brake inlet scoops, fetching air flowing over the front wing. This is then directed through the wheel hub and exited via new open wheel nuts on the outside of the wheel. This means air is pushed from a high pressure area... Read more

Mercedes debuts new, higher nose

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Mercedes AMG have finally introduced their bespoke new nose cone for its F1 W05. Initially scheduled for introduction at the Australian Grand Prix, the nose cone design had to be adapted repeatedly and failed the FIA crash test three times before passing the front impact test.

The team mentioned their new nose would make it easier to balance the car, admitting that the one raced so far was just a simple version while this development was ongoing. Sharing obvious similarities, the ne... Read more

Red Bull debuts new drag cutting rear wing endplate

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Among the many updates present on various cars at Melbourne, Red Bull certainly has one of the more interesting as the RB10 features a brand new rear wing endplate, including a new solution to reduce the drag induced by the rear wing.

The previously common solution, as seen on the inset, was to add gills on the high pressure side of the rear wing. These gills allowed some air to bleed off from the high pressure area in between the endplates to end up on the outer sides of the endpla... Read more

Williams adopts central cooling funnel

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Williams have enjoyed several extremely productive testing days so far, and with the end of the tests nearing, the team is applying and testing new aerodynamic parts. One of the bigger upgrades fitted on the FW36 on Thursday with Bottas and Friday with Massa is the new rear bodywork featuring wider sidepod exits and a central funnel that blows hot sidepod air around the exhaust.

The team switched bodywork throughout the day for both drivers to be able to evaluate the new parts prope... Read more

Did Mercedes take a close look at the RB10?

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Having enjoyed a reliable test Jerez, Mercedes have begun varying aerodynamic parts and verify performance, rather than only reliability. Mercedes appear to have had a very close look at Red Bull's rear end packaging during its few outings at Jerez as the team have introduced new bodywork around the exhaust.

Until noon, the F1 W05 was seen with the same spec as in Jerez, with narrow bodywork around the central exhaust and large oval cooling outlets on each side of the gearbox. The n... Read more

A closer look at McLaren's butterfly suspension

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McLaren have come up with the first real innovation of the year by creating rear suspension wishbones that are very different to what we usually see. It is the normal approach to have a horizontal teardrop design, almost parallel to the reference plane in order to minimize drag created by the suspension elements. McLaren's version though as just a bit different.

The team's approach is far away from drag reduction. Instead, the elements are rather big with a cross section similar to ... Read more

New Ferrari sidepod panel makes it to race day

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Scuderia Ferrari have introduced another part to their F138, namely a new sidepod panel with a small bridge bending over the sidepod shoulder. The item was previously tested during free practice sessions, but before the Brazilian Grand Prix weekend never made it past Friday evening. At Autodromo Carlos Pace however, both cars had the new element fitted during qualifying, hence they will also be used during tomorrow's Grand Prix.

The item is designed to better control airflow over t... Read more

Williams experiments without Coanda, and finds car improved

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Williams started the Abu Dhabi weekend by fitting Pastor Maldonado's FW35 with a non-coanda exhaust configuration, trying to do some testing for 2014 where such an exhaust will be entirely banned. Even though the exhaust positions are not quite what it will have to be in 2014- where a single exhaust pipe in the centre of the car will be mandatory - , the team hoped that be removing the exhaust channel (inset) they would get more consistent readings that are not that much influenced ... Read more

McLaren continues with small updates

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McLaren continue to add small updates to its car, possibly evaluating the effect of items with 2014 in mind. Already seen in Korea, the front wing had new pillars, moved back considerably. In fact the entire middle part of the front wing is new, along with the positions of the camera in between the pillars. Moving them backward meant that the team can better exploit the venturi effect that is being created by the long pillars, a feature that is rather common today in F1, as is the l... Read more

Ferrari's make-or-break Singapore upgrade

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The Singapore Grand Prix weekend has repeatedly been dubbed as the decisive point in the season for Ferrari to see whether or not it should continue to develop its F138. In a final attempt to keep in the championship race, the team came up with a raft of updates and will evaluate after the race if it was enough to stay in the hunt for a championship. Initial Friday sings though show that Ferrari may have dropped back to the pace it had at Hungary and other high downforce tracks in t... Read more