Formula 1, the pinnacle of automotive technology and innovation, has advanced by leaps and bounds in 2022. Starting this year, the FIA (Fédération Internationale de l’Automobile) has thoroughly reworked the rules and regulations for more competitive racing. So, with that out of the way, let’s look at the five most important things to know about the game-changing 2022 car, a full-scale model debuting at the 2021 British Grand Prix.
1. The Car Will Be Equipped With 18-Inch Low-Profile Tires for the First Time
F1 fans have probably seen a lot of footage recently of teams testing Pirelli’s larger 18-inch tires in preparation for next year. The new Pirelli compounds and constructions for these 18-inch tires have been designed to reduce tire overheating when sliding – a primary aspect that should assist in closer racing.
2. An Aero Feature From The 1970s Has Returned!
F1’s Motorsports team began work on the 2022 car in 2017, and it quickly became clear that the critical change required to ensure closer racing would focus on ground effect to create downforce. The ground effect became popular in Formula One in the late 1970s, when cars were effectively designed in the shape of upside-down airplane wings, creating massive amounts of downforce as they pushed into the track.
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3. Cars Will Use More Environmentally Friendly Fuel
Current regulations require cars to run on fuel containing 5.75% bio-components. While F1 is still working hard to introduce fully sustainable fuel soon, the bio-component ratio will increase to 10% by 2022. This will accomplish by switching to ‘E10 fuel,’ with ‘E’ standing for ethanol and ’10’ referring to its percentage in the mixture. However, ethanol must be a second-generation biofuel produced sustainably, which means it will have a near-zero carbon footprint – an “interim step,” in the words of Formula 1’s Chief Technical Officer Pat Symonds, that will also help the sport comply with current road car fuel regulations.
4. The Car Will Have Over-Wheel Winglets For The First Time, And Wheel Covers Will Return!
Over-wheel winglets and wheel covers, last seen in F1 in 2009, are two of the car’s most notable features. The reason behind including the latter is simple & straight. While sending airflow through the wheels is a highly effective way for teams to increase downforce, it also adds to the chaotic aerodynamic wake coming off the cars.
5. The 2022 Car Has Been Put Through Over 7,500 Simulations to Reach This Point
F1 is nothing if not a particular sport, and as you can imagine, developing the 2022 car has not been a ‘finger in the air exercise.
Instead, F1’s Motorsports team ran around 7,500 simulations, generating roughly half a petabyte of data. That’s the equivalent of one-third of Facebook’s 10 billion photos or ten million four-drawer filing cabinets full of text documents.
And there you have it: the 5 most important facts about the 2022 car. F1’s Motorsports team is confident that they have developed a set of regulations to achieve their closer racing goal while not being overly prescriptive.
Now all that remains is to see what the teams come up with in time for pre-season testing in 2023… So watch live sports coverages to stay updated.