The particular demands of the Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez urged teams to make key tweaks to their cars for this weekend. F1Technical’s senior writer Balázs Szabó analyses the upgrades debuted in Mexico City.
With the Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez located at more than 2,200 metres above sea level, engineers have to deal with unique requirements that are vastly different to anything experienced at other circuits. The high altitude means thin air, poorer than normal heat dissipation from elements such as power units (which are already working harder in the low density air) and brakes.
It is therefore no surprise to see many teams debut track-specific changes to their cars.Red Bull
The reigning world champion teams have enlarged the forward exit louvres for the right side. The team noted that the tweak to the cooling configuration of the RB19 have been implemented in toder to “achieve sufficient cooling in the lower atmospheric pressure of Mexico City.”AlphaTauri
AlphaTauri were among the teams that have brought significant upgrades to Austin. The outfit from Faenza have debuted circuit-specific front brake ducts and a larger engine cover exit in Mexico City.
The team noted that the brake ducts and the central engine cover exit have “been increased in size to increase mass flow through central radiator cores given the extreme cooling demands of this high altitude circuit.”Williams
Williams have brought a larger engine cover with a bigger rear centreline exit, but it will only be used if the engineers think that it is required. This modified engine cover allows more cooling air to be drawn through the coolers to reduce the temperature of the PU and gearbox fluids.
Furthermore, Williams have designed panels with additional louvres that are available if required.Ferrari
After securing a pole position and struggling for race pace in Austin, Ferrari have also arrieved in Mexico City with a few tweaks to the cooling layout of their SF23.
The Scuderia have employed additional cockpit louvres and cooling exit gurneys on their car with the team claiming that “these new louvres and gurney geometries are extending the top end of the engine cooling capacity.”
Alpine have impleted changed both to the cooling louvres and the engine cover of their A523 in Mexico City. Their 2023 F1 challenger has got deeper mid louvres than the previous maximum cooling louvres seen on the car. This update was used in Qatar FP1 as a test item for this race.
Moreover, the A523 sports a Mexico-specific engine cover on which the panel exit at the rear of the car provides higher cooling levels.McLaren
After their impessive performance in Austin, McLaren have arrived with lower expectation in Mexico City. However, things indicate that their MCL60 have maintained its recent performance level.
In Mexico, the car features a revised engine cover geometry which “allows for increased massflow through the radiators, which is required at this circuit due to the particular ambient conditions.”
Moreover, McLaren have come up with a larger Front Brake Scoop for the Mexico City Grand Prix that has been designed to increase front brake cooling capacity.Alfa Romeo
Alfa Romeo have redesigned the rear brake duct for the Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez, albeit this change is not a circuit-specific tweak, but for chasing for more performance.
The updated rear brake duct works in conjunction with the floor introduced in Austin to improve the aerodynamic efficiency of the car and generate downforce.Haas
After debuting their excessive upgrade package in Austin, Haas have brought cooling-related changes to the louvres and engine covers.
There is a small modification at the exit of the Front Brake Duct Scoop which should allow “the engineers to adjust the brake cooling with a variation of the aerodynamic forces around the front corner.”
There are no changes at Mercedes or Aston Martin.