Formula One's governing body, the FIA has formally confirmed that teams have been banned from carrying out aerodynamic and CFD testing on their 2026 F1 cars until 1 January 2025.
Formula One will introduce a whole new regulation set for 2026, with sweeping chassis changes to come alongside new power unit regulations. F1 Commission held a meeting ahead of the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix where they agreed to a ban of aerodynamic testing on the teams' 2026 cars in order to prevent outfits from abandoning the development of their 2024 and 2025 F1 cars and focus entirely on the completely new 2026 machineries.
This week, the last 2023 FIA’s World Motor Sport Council meeting took place in Baku where the rule has been confirmed and registered in the Sporting Regulations. The revised rule means that teams will be prohibited from performing any wind tunnel or computational fluid dynamics (CFD) analysis on the '26 vehicles until January 1, 2025.
The updated sporting regulations for the 2024 F1 season now state: “In order to prevent testing which aims to develop for the 2026 season, from 1/12/2023 until 1/1/2025 inclusive, RWTT [restricted wind tunnel testing] may only be carried out using a scale model that substantially complies with the 2023, 2024 or 2025 F1 technical regulations.
“With the exception of dyno testing aimed to develop brake system components with minimal air ducting and provided such tests do not concurrently test (or in any way provide incidental data or knowledge on) the performance or endurance of parts or systems classified as bodywork, no wind tunnel testing may be carried out using car geometry partially or wholly compliant with and/or substantially derived from drafts and/or published versions of the 2026 F1 Technical Regulations or FIA proposed 2026 bodywork geometries and concepts.”