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News and Analysis


The ‘flapping’ phenomenon behind F1’s latest flexi wing intrigue

Formula 1 is as much an aero contest as it is a fight between drivers, so it’s no surprise that it has become the focus of the latest Red Bull versus Mercedes battleground.

Why F1's flexi wing tricks are a never-ending problem for the FIA

The FIA's clampdown on Formula 1 teams exploiting clever 'bendy wings' to boost straightline speed is the latest skirmish in a war that has raged for decades.

What is behind McLaren's latest F1 upgrades

McLaren has emerged as the strongest 'best of the rest' team in Formula 1 this year, but it hasn't stopped it pushing on with upgrades.

The aero revamp that Red Bull has unleashed in Portugal

Red Bull has shown no signs of easing off in its Formula 1 development push, as it brought a raft of upgrades to its RB16B for the fight against Mercedes in Portugal.

How Aston Martin is fighting back from its low rake deficit

Aston Martin has spoken openly about how it feels that Formula 1’s new 2021 aero regulations have hurt its low rake car.

What Verstappen's scenic tour revealed about Red Bull's secrets

Formula 1 teams go to great lengths to keep their design ideas secret from rivals, but sometimes events beyond their control end up revealing everything.

Are Z-shaped floors the way to go in F1 2021?

Formula 1 teams appear divided over the best floor solution for the 2021 rules, as a new set of regulations once again resulted in two opposing design trends appearing.

Why F1's 2021 rules hurt low rake Mercedes more

Mercedes' confirmation that it believes its low rake car concept has been hit hardest by Formula 1's 2021 aero rule change has added an interesting dynamic to the title battle.

Aston Martin makes floor changes amid low rake rules hit

Aston Martin has made a number of changes to its AMR21's floor design ahead of the Formula 1 season opener at Bahrain.

Why McLaren's clever F1 diffuser trick is legal

The clever diffuser solution adopted by McLaren was a big talking point of Formula 1's pre-season testing weekend, but just how and why has it opted to chase this development?

Ferrari opts for radical F1 diffuser fin solution

The mounting interest around new floor solutions in Formula 1 has increased in Bahrain, with photos of Ferrari revealing a radical diffuser fin solution to help drive performance gains.

The secrets of Red Bull's RB16B F1 car revealed

After weeks of secrecy the design tricks of Red Bull's new RB16B challenger are slowly being revealed during Formula 1 pre-season testing. Autosport takes a look at the latest discoveries from the Bahrain paddock.

McLaren’s workaround to surpass 2021's F1 diffuser limits

Formula 1’s new aero rules aimed to cut downforce have been a big challenge for teams this winter as they have thrown everything at trying to recover the losses.

What’s behind Alpine's jumbo airbox

Alpine caused a stir on the opening day of Formula 1 testing when it emerged with a rather exaggerated mega airbox and engine cover.

Aston Martin tweaks floor for F1 testing

Aston Martin F1 has rolled out its 2021 challenger with a tweaked floor on the first day of pre-season testing in Bahrain.

How Mercedes created its fastest-ever car

New aero rules introduced to cut down on downforce ahead of 2022's new concept cars mean that Formula 1's 2020 machines will probably go down as the fastest ever

How Mercedes overcame its latest Formula 1 rules threat

Despite new aero rules aimed at slowing Formula 1 cars down, while also improving their ability to race closely, the 2019 Mercedes W10 continued the team's turbo hybrid-era winning streak

How Mercedes finally tamed its "diva" F1 car

After a dominant start to Formula 1's turbo-hybrid era, with Mercedes getting ever stronger, it was inevitable that at some point it would hit its first bump in the road

How Mercedes improved upon its turbo-hybrid F1 titan

Mercedes hit the ground running when Formula 1's turbo-hybrid era began in 2014, as its W05 made perfect use of the best power unit to charge to world title glory

The car that began Mercedes' modern-era F1 success

Mercedes' dominance in Formula 1 has shown no signs of slowing down, as the W11 chassis helped the team to a seventh consecutive title double

How 2022's Formula 1 tech arms race could impact 2021

Formula 1's tech arms race will intensify on 1 January as teams can commence CFD and windtunnel work on their designs for the all-new 2022 regulations

What's new for Formula 1 in 2021?

Formula 1 may be facing an unprecedented situation with teams carrying over their cars for a second season in 2021, but that does not mean everything is staying the same

How Ferrari’s Imola-spec F1 car shows hit and miss upgrades of SF1000

Ferrari arrived at Formula 1's Emilia Romagna Grand Prix in relatively high spirits given its recent results, having been able to unlock more performance from its SF1000

Mercedes set to test F1 car without DAS in Portuguese GP practice

Mercedes is set to test its car without DAS in Formula 1 practice for the Portuguese Grand Prix, as part of a learning exercise for next year

Norris to race with new McLaren nose concept at F1 Russian GP

McLaren has committed to running its new nose concept with Lando Norris for Russian Grand Prix qualifying and the race in Sochi

Banned: F1's novel steering solutions

Steering is an area of the car where engineers have tried to probe the limits, with various solutions having been tried - and many of these subsequently getting banned. Here we take a look at some of the most famous examples

Banned: Flexible wings in Formula 1

Formula 1's engineers are at their most ingenious when sidestepping the regulations to find performance - and, in this case, defying load tests to improve the car on-track. In this next edition of our Banned! series, we delve into the world of flexi-wings

Banned: The Coanda-effect exhaust

After an attempted ban on exhaust-blown diffusers for 2012, Formula 1 teams rocked up to the season opener with a workaround solution to get the same effect - the Coanda exhaust. Here's how they came to be, and how they worked

Banned: When exhaust-blown diffusers reigned supreme

In the latest edition of the 'Banned' series, Formula 1's relationship with the exhaust-blown diffuser is explored. Reintroduced by Red Bull at the turn of the 2010s, it began a battle of wits over the next two years which blew hot and cold throughout

Banned: The double diffuser that triggered an F1 development race

After a slew of protests over the legality of double diffusers in early 2009, the FIA declared that they would be permitted. Soon after, every other Formula 1 team had their own designs, opening up a brand new area of development

Banned: When F1 teams cheated the minimum weight rules

In the latest edition of the 'Banned' series, Autosport looks back at some of the attempts made by Formula 1 teams to work around the minimum weight rules

Banned F1 tech: Renault's confidence-inducing damper solution

The 'mass damper' adopted by Renault for its 2005 R25 Formula 1 car was a stability aid that improved front-end downforce before it was outlawed by the FIA

Banned: The Mercedes F1 team's double DRS device

At the start of the drag reduction system's tenure in Formula 1, multiple teams attempted to double its fun with novel and complex solutions. Mercedes' version brought the front wing into play, with mixed success before it was outlawed

Banned: The 2010 Formula 1 season's F-duct

The F-duct device pioneered by McLaren during the 2010 Formula 1 season was a novel way of reducing drag that was swiftly copied and then quickly banned for 2011

Banned: The ingenious twin-chassis Lotus F1 car

The Lotus 88 was Colin Chapman's ingenious attempt to continue Team Lotus' reputation as an avant-garde pioneer in Formula 1, but his twin-chassis solution was banned before it could race

How Mercedes could fit DAS into its Formula 1 suspension layout

Formula 1's stable rules for 2020 were expected to lead to design convergence between the top teams, but there has still been room for divergence among their respective suspension designs

Red Bull's innovative multi-link 2020 F1 front suspension design

While Mercedes' dual-axis steering system turned heads in the Barcelona Formula 1 paddock, Red Bull unveiled a front suspension change it hopes will eradicate its deficit in slow-speed corners

How the Mercedes F1 team's 2020 sidepod design is set to evolve

On the eve of a new Formula 1 season, Mercedes will feel the weight of expectation like no other team, having achieved an uninterrupted sequence of six double world championships

Why Mercedes' wheel rims have become F1's latest tech controversy

The fierce battle between Mercedes and Ferrari means incremental gains have been incredibly important in swinging momentum one way or the other in Formula 1's 2018 title fight

The McLaren Formula 1 concept that inspired Mercedes and Ferrari

McLaren's Formula 1 design team's concepts are often found on other cars up and down the grid

Is a blown wing trick part of Ferrari's Formula 1 advantage?

Quick through the corners and faster on the straights, Ferrari's SF71H certainly seems to be producing performance beyond the level its Formula 1 rivals expected

Why Mercedes' Austrian GP F1 update is its boldest 2018 step so far

The Mercedes Formula 1 team's aggressive new update unveiled ahead of the Austrian Grand Prix raised a few eyebrows because it marked the team's biggest change of the season

How Ferrari's Formula 1 mirrors became a talking point

Rear view mirrors are often seen as a necessary inconvenience in Formula 1, because for all their safety benefits they are far from ideal in aerodynamic terms

Why F1's 2019 aerodynamic changes should make racing better

The FIA is making radical aerodynamic changes for 2019 to improve overtaking in Formula 1, which are explained in this animation

How Force India is trying to solve tech problems with 2018 F1 car

Force India has admitted it has missed its performance targets with its 2018 Formula 1 car, but continued to make progress during the Spanish Grand Prix weekend and post-race test

Ferrari Formula 1 team's tech push goes beyond banned winglets

Ferrari's halo-mounted mirrors courted fresh controversy at the Spanish Grand Prix last weekend, but this was just one of several new technical solutions introduced by the Formula 1 team

Red Bull's Spanish GP F1 upgrades explained

Red Bull introduced a major Formula 1 upgrade package during Spanish Grand Prix free practice, including revised sidepods, bargeboards and floor

Formula 1: Details of new McLaren upgrade revealed at Spanish GP

McLaren introduced its major Formula 1 upgrade package in first free practice for the Spanish Grand Prix, with both Fernando Alonso and Stoffel Vandoorne running its extravagant new nose

Formula 1: Ferrari to trial halo-mounted mirrors in Spanish GP

The Ferrari Formula 1 team is set to trial rear-view mirrors mounted on the halo at this weekend's Spanish Grand Prix

Mirror tweaks to SF71H highlight level of scrutiny Ferrari is under

Ferrari's 2018 car has been the subject of close scrutiny from rival Formula 1 teams, which want to ensure the SF71H complies fully with technical regulations

How Ferrari and Mercedes are adapting their Formula 1 cars for Baku

Formula 1 heads to one its outlier circuits in Baku for the Azerbaijan Grand Prix this weekend, with the super-long straight and twisty city section creating unique demands

How Porsche turned its WEC LMP1 winner into an F1 beater

This week, Porsche managed to shatter the unofficial Formula 1 lap record around Spa-Francorchamps with an upgraded version of its 919 Hybrid

Sauber's aggressive tech push to hit Formula 1's midfield group

Sauber is pushing design boundaries as it attempts to catch its Formula 1 rivals in 2018 with evolutions of its "aggressive" new car concept

Australian GP: Force India's update for F1 season opener explained

Force India knows it will be tough to maintain its place as best of the rest behind the big three teams in Formula 1 this season

What was behind Ferrari-powered cars' smoking during F1 testing?

The huge plumes of smoke being emitted by the Ferrari-powered cars was one of the more unusual elements of 2018 pre-season Formula 1 testing at Barcelona

F1 halo: How teams have added aero devices for 2018 debut

The halo represents not just a structural challenge to the teams to incorporate it onto their cars, but it has opened up new aero development paths too

Analysis: what's behind Formula 1's 2021 engine row?

Formula 1 made its first step towards its future earlier this week when the FIA and F1's owner revealed its ideas for the post-2021 engine formula

How Formula 1's 2018 T-wing and shark fin ban will work

Formula 1's Strategy Group and F1 Commission this week approved a plan to outlaw T-wings and shark fins for 2018, but coming up with a workable regulation took careful thought

F1 technical focus: How Mercedes, Red Bull, Ferrari compare in 2017

Mercedes, Ferrari and Red Bull are tipped to be a long way clear of the rest of the Formula 1 field in 2017, and each team has taken a different approach with its new car

What Manor design images reveal about Formula 1 2017

The Manor Formula 1 team's demise came just when it should have been close to signing off its 2017 car