Mercedes came to the 2022 F1 season with a unique design that any other team couldn’t foresee.
The 2022 Formula 1 season started with new rules and regulations. The aerodynamics concept of the cars was shifted towards less dirty air and ground effect. All the teams interpreted the rules to make the best challenger as Ferrari and red bull came on top.
Mercedes, on the other hand, came with a completely different and unique design. The team eliminated the sidepods to opt for a “zero sidepods” design. At first, the design seemed to revolutionize. However, it soon became clear that the W13 was nowhere near a title-winning car and the “zero sidepods” didn’t seem to provide any help.
The Silver Arrows faced a tough season. The eight times constructors champions finished third with only one win in 2022.
Mike Elliott presents his views on Mercedes’ F1 design concept and the future of car development
Mercedes technical director Mike Elliott was interviewed about whether it surprised the side to find out that the Silver Arrows were the only team to go in favor of the zero sidepods design. To this Elliot responded:
“We were surprised that no one else found this loophole. When you’ve gone down this path, it’s very hard to copy anything else.”
After the end of the last season, Toto Wolff indicated that the DNA of the car will change. However, the changes might not be visible that much on the overall shape of the W14.
Regardless, the latest reports indicate that the Silver Arrows are moving towards a more neutral design following their old sidepods design and adapting to the red bull ideology at the same time.
“We only have a partial view of things,”
“We only see what our car does. It’s difficult to judge how the other concepts react.”
“We’ve been trying to understand the issues and get into a position to predict the performance variations from track to track.”
“It has nothing to do with the shape of the sidepods, but more to do with how we designed the car and what our goals were.”
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