McLaren 2014 F1 car's suspension innovation - Gary Anderson

McLaren's innovative rear suspension design has been the big technical talking point of the second day of 2014 Formula 1 testing at Jerez, writes AUTOSPORT technical expert Gary Anderson

McLaren 2014 F1 car's suspension innovation - Gary Anderson

The team has attached a large aerodynamically-profiled 'blocker' to each of the rearmost suspension links.

This concept is designed both to give more downforce at low speed and reduce drag at high speed.

These blockers must be part of the suspension itself, but there is a very fine line between an independent shroud, which would be illegal, and something that is all one part and I'm sure that McLaren has ensured it complies with the rules.

This appears to meet all requirements of the regulations in terms of location and structure.

Follow testing as it happens on AUTOSPORT Live

These aerodynamically-profiled parts act as devices to block the airflow coming out of the Coke bottle area when it gets to the back of the diffuser.

It creates an area of low pressure behind these blockers and this then increases the velocity of the airflow travelling underneath the car, generating more downforce from the underfloor.

The rear beam wing previously did this job, but the 2014 regulations have banned that so teams are looking for new ways to make up for it.

The interesting thing about this package is that when the car is at higher ride height, these sections will almost completely close the gap at the top of the diffuser, helping it to work at low speed.

At higher speed, because of suspension deflection, a gap will open up between the bottom of the lower blocker and the diffuser, which will reduce drag.

So this makes it a double whammy, giving you more downforce under braking and in slower corners and less drag at high speed.

This could be McLaren's secret weapon because, if it does work, it is not something that can be copied in five minutes as it is dependent on a number of design parameters at the rear of the car.

shares
comments
Jerez F1 test: Jenson Button quickest for McLaren on wet morning

Previous article

Jerez F1 test: Jenson Button quickest for McLaren on wet morning

Next article

Red Bull forced to stop running on Jerez Formula 1 test day two

Red Bull forced to stop running on Jerez Formula 1 test day two
Load comments
Remembering Switzerland’s first F1 winner Plus

Remembering Switzerland’s first F1 winner

Stepping up to F1 in 1962, Jo Siffert shone with Rob Walker Racing Team and BRM before his career was abruptly ended in a fatal crash at Brands Hatch in 1971. Kevin Turner looked back at the life of Switzerland's first F1 winner on the 50th anniversary of his death

What Verstappen is risking with his current stance on 2021 F1 world title defeat Plus

What Verstappen is risking with his current stance on 2021 F1 world title defeat

OPINION: Max Verstappen is back in the lead of the 2021 Formula 1 drivers’ championship, with the season’s final flyaway events set to get underway in the USA this weekend. But a defensive stance he’s recently adopted could have a lasting impact for the Red Bull driver when it comes to his chances of defeating Lewis Hamilton and Mercedes

The hidden Ferrari struggle that Sainz’s recent charge put to rest Plus

The hidden Ferrari struggle that Sainz’s recent charge put to rest

Despite appearing to adjust to life as a Ferrari driver with relative ease, it was far from straightforward under the surface for Carlos Sainz Jr. But, having made breakthroughs in rather different routes at the Russian and Turkish races, he’s now targeting even greater feats for the rest of the Formula 1 season

Formula 1
Oct 20, 2021
The final throes of Brazil's fleetingly successful F1 team Plus

The final throes of Brazil's fleetingly successful F1 team

Emerson Fittipaldi is better remembered for his Formula 1 world championships and Indianapolis 500 successes than for the spell running his eponymous F1 team. Despite a hugely talented roll call of staff, it was a period of internal strife, limited funding and few results - as remembered by Autosport's technical consultant

Formula 1
Oct 18, 2021
Why McLaren's expanding agenda will benefit its F1 resurgence Plus

Why McLaren's expanding agenda will benefit its F1 resurgence

In the 1960s and 1970s, McLaren juggled works entries in F1, sportscars and the Indy 500 while building cars for F3 and F2. Now it’s returning to its roots, expanding 
into IndyCars and Extreme E while continuing its F1 renaissance. There’s talk of Formula E and WEC entries too. But is this all too much, too soon? STUART CODLING talks to the man in charge

Formula 1
Oct 17, 2021
How Tsunoda plans to achieve his F1 potential Plus

How Tsunoda plans to achieve his F1 potential

Yuki Tsunoda arrived in grand prix racing amid a whirlwind of hype, which only increased after his first race impressed the biggest wigs in Formula 1. His road since has been rocky and crash-filled, and OLEG KARPOV asks why Red Bull maintains faith in a driver who admits he isn’t really that big a fan of F1?

Formula 1
Oct 15, 2021
The danger of reading too much into F1's clickbait radio messages Plus

The danger of reading too much into F1's clickbait radio messages

OPINION: After Lewis Hamilton responded to reports labelling him 'furious' with Mercedes following his heated exchanges over team radio during the Russian Grand Prix, it provided a snapshot on how Formula 1 broadcasting radio snippets can both illuminate and misrepresent the true situation

Formula 1
Oct 14, 2021
Why F1’s approach to pole winners with grid penalties undermines drivers Plus

Why F1’s approach to pole winners with grid penalties undermines drivers

OPINION: Valtteri Bottas is credited with pole position for the 2021 Turkish Grand Prix, despite being beaten in qualifying. This is another example of Formula 1 and the FIA scoring an own goal by forgetting what makes motorsport magic, with the Istanbul race winner also a victim of this in the championship’s recent history

Formula 1
Oct 13, 2021