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Mercedes, Aston Martin suffer setbacks as FIA bans innovations for 2023 F1 season

While they met the regulations and were approved by the FIA, both designs caused controversy because they appeared to contradict the main goal of making F1's new era of cars easier to follow.

Lewis Hamilton's Mercedes at Imola. (Image: Twitter/ Mercedes-AMG-PETRONAS F1 team)
By Nilavro Ghosh | Nov 24, 2022 | 2 Min Read follow icon Follow Us

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The FIA has banned aerodynamic innovations introduced this year by Mercedes and Aston Martin for F1 2023. Mercedes’ front-wing endplate design and Aston Martin’s “unusual” rear-wing concept, both of which were first seen at the Hungarian Grand Prix, have both been banned under F1 technical regulations for the coming season. While they met the regulations and were approved by the FIA, both designs caused controversy because they appeared to contradict the main goal of making F1’s new era of cars easier to follow.

“Obviously this year they were both legal. The regulations have changed on both the front and the rear in different ways to stop those solutions,” said FIA’s head of single-seaters Nikolas Tombazis. “Some of these things where we changed the rules are in that category.”

“But that article [3.2] wasn’t intended that: ‘Okay, if you’re smart and you have a solution, we’re going to take it off the car immediately.’ It just gave an explanation about sometimes why we have to intervene with the regulations. But we’ve still done it via governance. We don’t have the right to just say: ‘we don’t like this, let’s ban it.'”

F1 chief technical officer’s view

When asked if there was anything he would change about the rules, F1 chief technical officer Pat Symonds said, “No I don’t think so, I think we need to let them develop. There are a few little tweaks, we saw that unusual rear wing on the Aston Martin earlier in the year and the regulations have been tweaked to not allow that next year because it had the potential to go in the wrong direction. But overall, I am pretty pleased with it.”

Symonds also confirmed that additional changes to the floor area will be made to combat the problems caused by porpoising, a phenomenon that returned to F1 this season and dominated the headlines early in the season. “There are some small changes to the floor next year, not to try to eliminate but to reduce the amount of bouncing we are getting on the cars, but no, we have really got to consolidate now. It would be wrong to do a lot of changes,” he added.



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