All three concepts [Copyright: F1]
F1 has officially released the concept designs of how the 2021 cars could look like during the Singapore GP weekend.
An image of the second concept was leaked over the Singapore GP weekend which had the F1 car in a totally different style with a fairly simple front wing and winglets on the rear body with a sleak sidepod design.
Following the leak, Liberty Media released three concept designs on Saturday - each having its own uniqueness keeping in mind close racing and even aesthetics. The release from F1 explained the different designs in a nutshell:
"The first concept shows how the halo cockpit protection device can be much more integrated and subsequently more aesthetically pleasing. The second concept is more refined and stylistically more aggressive.
"The third concept is the most current but there are still a lot of interesting ideas that have come out of the research that haven't yet been brought to life by the artist. However, in this concept you can see the first signs of devices to control the way the airflow comes of the wheels."
"When we started looking at the 2021 car, the primary objective was to enable the cars to race well together," said F1 motorsport boss Ross Brawn. "What we established early on in our research is the cars we have now are very bad in following each other.
"Once the cars get within a few car lengths of each other, they lose 50% of their downforce. That’s a substantial amount of performance lost. So we set about understanding why that was and how we can improve it.
"I’m pleased to say we’re at about 80%. As time has gone on, another of the primary objectives was to make great looking cars. We want cars that look better than what you see in a video game, cars that kids want to have up on their walls.
"At each stage, as we have been evolving the car, we’ve had someone we are working with create a graphic representation artist to give us a feel of what the car could look like. That is not to control the development, because it’s critical this development achieves its objectives, but why shouldn’t we have great looking cars as we’re evolving the cars?
"We want a car that is inspiring. F1 is the pinnacle of motorsport and the car should look sensational. As the aerodynamicists were evolving the car, the graphics designer was taking where they were and trying to capture it at each stage.
"Concept 2 is a bit more extreme. One of the things you’ll see is the bigger wheels. We’re committed to 18-inch wheels for the future. They look better but there are a lot of technical reasons why we want them.
"The tyres and the wheels are the dirtiest area of the car, they cause huge disruption in the airflow. We are starting to look at devices that can stabilise the flow as it comes of the wheel. It’s maturing as we go along."
The F1 team is aiming to undertake more research work and have a framework in place ready by 2019 to finalise the eventual design. The hope is for the current teams to adopt the designs and also have fresh teams join in the grid.
The idea is also to inspire young people to get in motor racing, especially F1. "I've been involved in a number of initiatives where F1 is a catalyst to get young people’s interest peaked in technology, the STEM topics - science, technology, engineering and maths.
"We're short of engineers of the future. If F1 creates the passion for young people to get involved on engineering, in science topics, and technology, that’s a fantastic way of doing it," said Brawn.
"We want cars that are going to excite young people. F1 is a great opportunity to promote technology and through F1 in Schools, for the younger students, then there’s Formula Student, which is a competition that goes on in universities."
[Note: This story was also written by me on Formula Rapida]