2018 cars speculation

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roon
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2018 cars speculation

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Do you think that, with the improvements of the Renault & Ferrari power units , we'll see any other teams take up the Ferrari sidepods? Or will teams stay on their own paths, iterating their 2017 designs? The RB13 showed it can win races, so it might not look too different next year. Merc have no reason to stray far from their dominant design.
Last edited by roon on Sat Nov 25, 2017 8:21 pm, edited 8 times in total.

Sevach
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Re: 2018 cars speculation

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There have been speculations regarding Mercedes ditching their design and going for a raked style car but i don't buy it, i don't see Aldo Costa ditching this concept while it's still competitive, the wind tunnel results of the raked concept would have to be overwhelming for that to happen.

It will be interesting to see how Ferrari evolves their sidepods, now that they have one year running with it.

Will teams follow suit or go with a more Red Bull like design that still seems just as good.

On the engine front Renault finally seems ready to go all in, while oil clarifications could hurt Mercedes/Ferrari.

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AMG.Tzan
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Re: 2018 cars speculation

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Rumors in Germany say that Mercedes is going to totally change their design philosophy and go from long wheelbase - no rake to shorter wheelbase - with rake like most of the other teams! I believe that rumor since they didn't bring any significant updates since Hungary i think and they had too many problems with bringing the tires up to the right operating window...and had it not been for Ferrari's reliability they would have had a difficult time with them!

So i expect Ferrari and Red Bull to be upfront at the start next year with Mercedes joining a bit later in the season!

As for Mclaren i really think they can be up there with Red Bull with the same engines, since they were the only team to aerodynamically challenge Red Bull back in the blown diffuser years (2009-2013)! They have to be up there next year...Formula 1 needs a 4 way fight right now with the best teams and the best drivers up front!!
"The only rule is there are no rules" - Aristotle Onassis

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Phil
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Re: 2018 cars speculation

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To be honest, i smell trouble for Mercedes next year.

Their concept this year has been very conpetitive, but having the best PU once again has clearly aided them, at the very least in qualifying and from a reliability point of view. Next year with oil burning being seriously clamped down, i think the PU difference will be minimal. This means that aero and chassis will be more important.

Ferrari have built a monster of a car this season that IMO should have taken the fight to the last race if it had not been held back by a catastrophic driver and reliability failure in the Asia races. Their car is aerodynamically simple and has a wide operating window. This means the car has been a very strong contender on all tracks this year, even when on many tracks, the Mercedes prevailed thanks to stronger pace in QF and on tracks where PU performance was key. Next year, Mercedes will no longer have this benefit.

Mercedes have gone for the long wheelbase low rake concept because they understood it well. Together with the suspension designs they were able to perfect it. With the ban on their suspension technics, that concept and the potential might have gone straight out the window.

If they do change the concept for next year, i’d be very surprised if they can make it wotk and be competitive from the first race on. I could see them struggling severly and the PU wont bail them out this time.

Going into the winter break, i could see them design two cars - one on this years car and one going high rake and shorter wheelbase and then figure out which one is better. This may limit their ability and resources.

It’s sure going to be interesting.

My hunch for next year is that Ferrari and RedBull will be right in the fight. McLaren, could also be. Mercedes... i am just not sure. I guess it depends how much development potential is still left in the PU (despite closer scrutinieering on oil and fuel) for them to retain an advantage in this area? .....
Not for nothing, Rosberg's Championship is the only thing that lends credibility to Hamilton's recent success. Otherwise, he'd just be the guy who's had the best car. — bhall II
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skoop
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Re: 2018 cars speculation

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Not an actual feature on a car, but I'll post it anyway: According to Christian Horner Red Bull plans to run 100 laps on the first day of testing and their car will be build 4 days before testing

wesley123
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Re: 2018 cars speculation

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Sevach wrote:
Thu Nov 02, 2017 10:37 pm
There have been speculations regarding Mercedes ditching their design and going for a raked style car but i don't buy it, i don't see Aldo Costa ditching this concept while it's still competitive, the wind tunnel results of the raked concept would have to be overwhelming for that to happen.
The high rake concept has been around for years now, and all that time Mercedes hasn't adopted it, so I don't see why they would start now.

imo people really underestimate the aero of the Mercedes, and more importantly; They have by far the most complex aero and haven't had much issues making this work, where they easily could have lost the plot.

afaik Mercedes hasn't seen many of their key people switch teams, so on this front they are just as competent as they already were.
It will be interesting to see how Ferrari evolves their sidepods, now that they have one year running with it.

Will teams follow suit or go with a more Red Bull like design that still seems just as good.
I'm not sure teams will run it or that Ferrari even keeps it. imo it's advantage is purely a visual thing -and certainly not as obvious as people make it out to be-; In front view most of the sidepod intake isn't in clear view.

However, the sidepod shape is still the same, just further back and masked with a large horizontal piece in front of it, which creates it's own set of problems.

And F1 has seen the trend of moving air down and around the side of the sidepod, instead of over the top as this causes lift. Red Bulls sidepod for example quickly turns into a mostly vertical surface and most other teams use a similar idea.
Ferrari would have a downside here as it grabs airflow going over the top of the sidepod to cool the car.
On the engine front Renault finally seems ready to go all in, while oil clarifications could hurt Mercedes/Ferrari.
This applies to every year, so it'll be anyones guess how they will perform next year. I wouldn't count out Honda, though. They certainly have improved, and the McLarens were much more competitive in Mexico than people would have expected them to be.
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Just_a_fan
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Re: 2018 cars speculation

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wesley123 wrote:
Fri Nov 03, 2017 11:24 am
Sevach wrote:
Thu Nov 02, 2017 10:37 pm
There have been speculations regarding Mercedes ditching their design and going for a raked style car but i don't buy it, i don't see Aldo Costa ditching this concept while it's still competitive, the wind tunnel results of the raked concept would have to be overwhelming for that to happen.
The high rake concept has been around for years now, and all that time Mercedes hasn't adopted it, so I don't see why they would start now.

There was a recent quote from Toto (I think) saying that they were looking at changing aero philosophy to high rake.
Turbo says "Dumpster sounds so much more classy. It's the diamond of the cesspools." oh, and "The Dutch fans are drunk. Maybe"

gdogg371
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Re: 2018 cars speculation

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A different looking Merc and a Red Bull powered by a surprisingly powerful Renault as the fastest cars, with Ferrari starting a little further behind Red Bull, then gradually falling backwards into a battle with an ever strengthening Mclaren.

The Monza 2018 spec Honda PU sees Brendan Hartley qualify 4th ahead of both Ferrari's who have a nightmare at their home race and Danny Ric who has an MGU-H failure in qualifying on the weekend he announces he will be driving for Ferrari in 2019. By season end Mclaren to have clearly the third fastest car after all their in season developments work as expected and first time.

The first Paddy Lowe era Williams is in a three way fight for 5th in the championship all season with Force India and Toro Rosso, edging both out despite a strong finish from the Italian team.

Seb to receive a one race ban, extended to two on appeal for racking up penalty points all season, then suffering another anger management issue and taking Alonso's left rear corner off during a Baku re run under the safety car at the British GP.

Red Bull/Mercedes/Hamilton/Verstappen underlying their dominance near the season end as five time champion Hamilton and Verstappen, move from last and second last after separate first lap incidents at Interlagos in the pouring rain to be running 1-2 mid race after a series of brilliant overtakes and finishing in that order...
Last edited by gdogg371 on Fri Nov 03, 2017 3:08 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Phil
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Re: 2018 cars speculation

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wesley123 wrote:
Fri Nov 03, 2017 11:24 am
The high rake concept has been around for years now, and all that time Mercedes hasn't adopted it, so I don't see why they would start now.

imo people really underestimate the aero of the Mercedes, and more importantly; They have by far the most complex aero and haven't had much issues making this work, where they easily could have lost the plot.

afaik Mercedes hasn't seen many of their key people switch teams, so on this front they are just as competent as they already were.
I agree. If I were to make a bet, I think I am also inclined to think Mercedes will try to stick with the philosophy that has brought them 4 straight world drivers and constructors championships.

However, I think one of the crucial things is that their advantage has been chipped away bit by bit over the last 4 years. Going into this year, the suspension ban and the tighter regulations around oil burning will surely hurt them going into next year to the point, I seriously wonder how much of that advantage they had up until now will still remain.

Undoubtedly, their aero package works, but it's hard to gauge its strength in an isolated form without knowing how much the PU factor is masking it. RedBull with the lacking Renault engine are already extremely close and Ferrari have shown throughout this year that they've been a worthy competitor, often ahead on race-day. It took an exceptional Hamilton and a team ontop of their issues and reliability to overcome this this year.

Going into next year, I think the engines will be closer as ever and it will really put a light on who delivers on the aero and chassis side of the car. If the Mercedes ends up being the more sensitive to extract performance, I can see them struggle. The strong PU and an hopefully exceptional Hamilton might still bail them out in qualifying trim, but in the races they could be well on their back foot.

The good news is this could well set us up on one of the greatest seasons coming, with perhaps 4 teams fighting at the forefront.

Key questions I think will be:

- how much can Mercedes still improve on the PU despite the tightening on fuel and oil regulations?
- how much will the others be able to close?
- Will the FIA close the loop hole of potential hydraulic suspension systems that Mercedes and others are said to be using that allows them to alter the ride height from qualifying to race by looping the fluids through the gearbox and therefore controlling the ride height somewhat?
- Will there be any larger changes in Pirelli compounds next year or will they stay largely the same? Reports are that Pirelli went too conservative this year - will they go more aggressive next year? Could we see a repeat of 2012?
- How will McLaren fare using Renault engines, especially vs. RedBull?
- What will James Allison bring to Mercedes?
Not for nothing, Rosberg's Championship is the only thing that lends credibility to Hamilton's recent success. Otherwise, he'd just be the guy who's had the best car. — bhall II
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GPR-A duplicate2
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Re: 2018 cars speculation

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Sevach wrote:
Thu Nov 02, 2017 10:37 pm
There have been speculations regarding Mercedes ditching their design and going for a raked style car but i don't buy it, i don't see Aldo Costa ditching this concept while it's still competitive, the wind tunnel results of the raked concept would have to be overwhelming for that to happen.
Aldo Costa hasn't been their aero chief. It has been Geoff Willis, Mike Elliott and the recently promoted Jarrod Murphy. John Owen is still their chief designer. So, it isn't Aldo Costa who would be the decision maker, though he would be party to it. They have a train of chiefs, including James Allison, so obviously it would be a deeply discussed decision to either go with the current philosophy of the car, with the modifications to cure the existing issues OR to chase a new philosophy, driven by the current issues AND an eye on increased competition.

I wouldn't be surprised if they turn up in February with another stunner. After all, they are the only team to have succeeded on either side of a major regulation change.

2018 has every sign of an extremely competitive season, with McLaren finally seeming to be getting a good engine, so should help them to get back to fighting for podiums, if not for outright wins. RB on the rise again and hopefully, there won't be a harakiri at Ferrari, following the debacle of the season. Autosport has already published a lengthy article about Vettel's supposed failure to lead Ferrari. Hope Ferrari themselves doesn't think so, albeit hard to convince everyone in Maranello with the kind of temperamental chief they have at the helm.

What can the factory Renault team do? They have been hiring staff and increasing investment. They must surely move ahead of Force India next season, if they have to achieve anything significant in their ambition to become championship contenders by 2020. Who would they be signing as a star driver for 2019? They would surely be losing Sainz to RB, when Ricciardo decides to leave.

Sevach
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Re: 2018 cars speculation

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Just_a_fan wrote:
Fri Nov 03, 2017 12:06 pm
wesley123 wrote:
Fri Nov 03, 2017 11:24 am
Sevach wrote:
Thu Nov 02, 2017 10:37 pm
There have been speculations regarding Mercedes ditching their design and going for a raked style car but i don't buy it, i don't see Aldo Costa ditching this concept while it's still competitive, the wind tunnel results of the raked concept would have to be overwhelming for that to happen.
The high rake concept has been around for years now, and all that time Mercedes hasn't adopted it, so I don't see why they would start now.

There was a recent quote from Toto (I think) saying that they were looking at changing aero philosophy to high rake.
They've looked at it before this season as well, doesn't mean they'll actually go for it.

Personally i think that would be against the culture Mercedes has shown in recent years.

Just_a_fan
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Re: 2018 cars speculation

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Sevach wrote:
Fri Nov 03, 2017 6:44 pm

Personally i think that would be against the culture Mercedes has shown in recent years.
The real question is whether the current concept has been taken to its limit. It may be that they just can't get any more downforce, in a useable way, from the concept. Perhaps that is one reason for their tyre heating issues this year - perhaps the car can't deliver anymore downforce from one end (or even the middle). They may be forced to change concept by the physical limits of the current concept.
Turbo says "Dumpster sounds so much more classy. It's the diamond of the cesspools." oh, and "The Dutch fans are drunk. Maybe"

Just_a_fan
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Re: 2018 cars speculation

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gdogg371 wrote:
Fri Nov 03, 2017 12:14 pm
A different looking Merc and a Red Bull powered by a surprisingly [...]
That sounds like a classic season. Yes please! =D>
Turbo says "Dumpster sounds so much more classy. It's the diamond of the cesspools." oh, and "The Dutch fans are drunk. Maybe"

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Re: 2018 cars speculation

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I think that this season the teams merely scratched the surface of what's possible with these cars. They'll look mostly the same next year save for the halo, and no T wings, the performance however will be quite a bit better. For one, there will be softer tires next season in an effort to create the option between one or two stops. That alone should be worth .5 per lap. Next, the diffuser and barge boards are an area that teams will have spent all year studying and optimizing, so next year's designs should be massively improved. I imagine this year teams experienced a lot of diffuser inconsistency, stalling, unwanted drag, before they started figuring things out. There was at least a second gained this year through in season development, a whole new chassis built with all the lessons learned and the teams more advanced design methods means next cars will be 1.5 seconds faster than this year.

In a sense having a simplistic car probably gave certain teams a leg up on development as they were able to see clearly which concepts worked or didn't, instead of going complex and trying to fine tune from there. I fear that Mercedes may have been caught in the aero and chassis front, but they still have the best power unit, and the package was just enough to win this year. Next year it will be even closer, the margin for error will be even smaller for Mercedes.

The much more stable aero and gains in efficiency means that maybe we can see a bit closer racing despite the turbulence from following. Doing 1:17's in Barcelona is going to be wild, I wouldn't be surprised if we see a 1:16.8 during testing.

As far as what the cars will look like, I think we'll see more "feathers" or little winglets sprouting up wherever they can get away with doing so.
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gdogg371
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Re: 2018 cars speculation

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godlameroso wrote:
Sat Nov 04, 2017 12:30 am
I think that this season the teams merely scratched the surface of what's possible with these cars. They'll look mostly the same next year save for the halo, and no T wings, the performance however will be quite a bit better. For one, there will be softer tires next season in an effort to create the option between one or two stops. That alone should be worth .5 per lap. Next, the diffuser and barge boards are an area that teams will have spent all year studying and optimizing, so next year's designs should be massively improved. I imagine this year teams experienced a lot of diffuser inconsistency, stalling, unwanted drag, before they started figuring things out. There was at least a second gained this year through in season development, a whole new chassis built with all the lessons learned and the teams more advanced design methods means next cars will be 1.5 seconds faster than this year.

In a sense having a simplistic car probably gave certain teams a leg up on development as they were able to see clearly which concepts worked or didn't, instead of going complex and trying to fine tune from there. I fear that Mercedes may have been caught in the aero and chassis front, but they still have the best power unit, and the package was just enough to win this year. Next year it will be even closer, the margin for error will be even smaller for Mercedes.

The much more stable aero and gains in efficiency means that maybe we can see a bit closer racing despite the turbulence from following. Doing 1:17's in Barcelona is going to be wild, I wouldn't be surprised if we see a 1:16.8 during testing.

As far as what the cars will look like, I think we'll see more "feathers" or little winglets sprouting up wherever they can get away with doing so.
I didn’t think I liked it at the time, but I definitely miss the festooned look of the the 2008 era cars, just with none of that narrow track/grooved tyre nonsense this time...