2022 F1 car model, Silverstone, 2021

“Very heavily regulated” 2022 F1 cars will differ little from presentation model

2021 British Grand Prix

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Tighter technical rules mean teams’ new cars for the 2022 F1 season are expected to closely resemble an example revealed by the series yesterday.

Formula 1 presented the first full-size model of a car designed to its new rules for 2022. Fernando Alonso expects next year’s cars will look much like the version seen at Silverstone.

Speaking in Thursday’s press conference after the presentation, Alonso said: “I don’t think that there will be a big difference to what we see today. I think the regulations are quite strict, there is not maybe the freedom that we had in the past.

“Obviously there will be different philosophies for different teams. They will not look exactly the same as what we see today. But that will be for a expert eye. I think for the normal people it will look not too different to what we see today.”

Formula 1’s new rules for next year were first presented in 2019. Their introduction was postponed by a year to the 2022 season as a cost-saving measure after the pandemic began.

Alonso examined F1’s 2022 car design yesterday
Alpine’s chassis director Pat Fry said the rules have been refined to reduce opportunities for teams to exploit ‘loopholes’ or unexpected opportunities to find more performance.

“There’s quite a few bits that are more vague and those bits you can interpret in a number of ways,” he said. “But the bulk of it, the wording is there for us to work on.

“There are a few things that are out there which I don’t think was in the FIA/FOM [spirit]. They look slightly different from what their original concepts were. I don’t think there are any gaping loopholes as such. And it is really, compared to what we had in the past, very heavily regulated.”

Understanding the meaning of the increasingly detailed new rules is a demanding task, Fry added. “Years ago you could read them and understand them. “Now you need to read them, then look at the CAD for an hour and then go back and read them again. It is more and more complicated.”

2022 F1 car design model

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Dieter Rencken
Dieter Rencken has held full FIA Formula 1 media accreditation since 2000, during which period he has reported from over 300 grands prix, plus...
Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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50 comments on ““Very heavily regulated” 2022 F1 cars will differ little from presentation model”

  1. We’re heading towards a spec series long term, you all know it!

    1. Looks like a mid 2000’s champ car but more swoopy and less blocky.

    2. A1gp fiasco comes to mind

      1. A Salvador Dali painting for me

  2. The way the write rules i am certain all cars will look different indeed. Low rake high rake possible? The nose is the one thing is going change for sure.

    1. The nose and the front wings are the sections that I don’t understand. Are the individual blades separate or are they all fused together to make one massive front wing unit.

      1. The driver cannot see the end of the wing they are way to big the end should between the front wheels so the driver can see the endplate.

        The rules are very big and are hard to read (For me) so i will wait for those who can understood the rules and explain to us.

        1. I’m looking at the complexity of manufacturing on giant component

  3. RocketTankski
    16th July 2021, 8:58

    They could rebrand, Indy style, as Formula. Auto. Racing. Teams.

    1. That would be a gas… or… off-gassing…

    2. I would rebrand F1 as: The Red Tape Series.

      Choking on the stuff.

    3. The FART world championship

  4. “There’s this massive loophole and we’re very excited to exploit it!” said absolutely nobody to the press ever.

    1. Well, didn’t Ross Brawn did bring up that there might be some potential that could be used in the year before they brought the double diffuser in @mazdachris?

      So it seems he might at the time have given a bit of a pre warning. But yeah, if you find a loophole, teams will keep their cards close to their chests to reveal as little as they can about that.

  5. I don’t think that there will be a big difference to what we see today.

    If that were true teams wouldn’t have written this year and in the case of Haas the last 2 years of car development off to focus on the 2022 cars. If these new regulations really are a spec series by the back door as some fear this would be a complete waste of resource.

    Also feel it underestimates the ingenuity of F1 designers/lawyers to find and abuse loopholes. Personally I’m expecting next years double diffuser to be something clever on the front wing that allows them to effectively recreate the Y-250 vortex.

    1. I think you’re misunderstanding him. By ‘today’ he means the new 2022 model that was unveiled, not today’s 2021 cars which are racing.

      1. Nevermimd I misunderstood you

        Anyhow, why would they need the Y250 vortex? Aren’t the new floor tunnels sealed by bodywork anyway?

        1. Compare the new car against the ground effect cars of the 70s and 80s and there’s one very noticeable difference. The new car doesn’t have a skirt. Yes we will see a return of the traditional venturi tunnels but the seal from the surrounding body work will be far from perfect. When optimising the ground effect the quality of the seal is everything (less air being sucked in from the sides means the air under the car has to accelerate more to replace that being displaced, which means lower pressure and more downforce). And you know what makes a good seal vortices.

  6. the rules have been refined to reduce opportunities for teams to () unexpected opportunities to find more performance

    That’s wrong for a series which is looking for engineering innovation and excellence.

    I would have preferred the ‘face melting’ designs and blue prints to be made available to all teams for free, a bit less restriction, and teams to decide from there (or from scratch) how to develop the cars.
    – Some teams (Haas) might just use this prototype as their ’22 car;
    – Others might make some minor changes;
    – And a few will break down as much as possible, and re-engineer it their way (as far as the Budget Cap allowing them).

    1. Biskit Boy (@sean-p-newmanlive-co-uk)
      16th July 2021, 12:44

      Reality check!

      F1 isn’t a sport or and engineering exercise. Its a way of making money by entertainment. For this good, close exciting racing is seen as a priority.

      F1 is no longer a series which is looking for engineering innovation and excellence. Judging by the litany of banned technologies and innovations, that’s was just an illusion perpetuated by the rule makers for quite a while.

      I do feel genuinely sorry for the many hardened F1 fans that get massive enjoyment from the technical aspects of F1 engineering, but I am not one of those. I am very happy with the direction F1 is taking at the moment. Closer racing with the driver making more of a difference is what matters to me. Whilst they may not admit it, it appears the decision makers in F1 are of the same mind.

      1. Engineering based race series are gigantically more popular. This is for a number of reason. You only have to look at the numbers ‘engineering’ based videos get on channels like Autosport to see it’s a huge component int he success of F1. Lose it at your peril.

        The engineering aspect has won Lewis Hamilton 6 titles at Merc. Without a heavy engineering componant he isn’t the big global superstar who has dominated as we’ve seen today. People like Lewis are MASSIVE drivers for a sport’s success.

        1. Biskit Boy (@sean-p-newmanlive-co-uk)
          16th July 2021, 15:06

          I’m not sure you are right, but its not me you have to convince its the f1 rule makers. I just made the observation that they are thinking along the same lines as me in some respects.

      2. @sean-p-newmanlive-co-uk If what you say were true the US style spec formula would be popular somewhere, but it’s not. Formula 1 has been sold on and made it’s name by being a manufacturers championship with the best most advanced engineering of any form of Motor Sport.
        These changes are putting at risk the future of F1 as the top level of Motor Sport and could drag it down to something similar to the B grade level of the US series. And like the US series no one outside of the states will bother to watch it.
        So I ask you a question if you dislike the current form of F1 why do you bother to watch it, why not stick with Indy/Nascar derbys?

        1. Biskit Boy (@sean-p-newmanlive-co-uk)
          16th July 2021, 15:28

          Indycar is popular in lots of countries. Obviously no where near F1, but it is only a national series. I enjoy it and most other motorsports series. Many are good, most can be improved, including F1.

          As for your question… well you make a bad assumption, I don’t dislike the current form of F1, I love it, but as I said, it can be improved. Don’t get me wrong I do get enjoyment from the technical aspects, the innovation, but it cannot be at the cost of close racing.

          I’ve been watching F1 since 1975 and its my religion. I can count on one hand the number of races I’ve missed on TV in that time and attended 26 races. Don’t question why I bother to watch it.

          At the moment I estimate lap time is about 98% car and 2% driver. You may have a different opinion, that’s cool, but if F1 purports to be a World Drivers Championship then it should be at least 50-50% car and driver. Perhaps that is the answer. Split the Manufacturers and Drivers Championships completely. Then this type of argument should go away.

          Looking forward to seeing what happens this weekend.
          Happy F1 watching

        2. IndyCar has lots of interest to race globally, but the series has refused to do so and concentrate on North America. The decision was made long ago to go to a single chassis to reduce the insane costs. There are so many configuration and set up differences every race that essentially they all different cars. Hard to call a series with the biggest race in the world (and largest single day sporting event) a “grade B series”.

          1. Penske Co. refuses this because their experience is from decades ago, before the proliferation of internet(!) and a true global audience.
            And in the US, F1 gets smaller TV ratings than Indycar.

            If you are a US based company and myopically just look at those numbers, global expansion is not on the agenda. Until a regime change

          2. Sorry, but claiming that “There are so many configuration and set up differences every race that essentially they all different cars.” is really stretching things. Look, I know you are besotted with IndyCar, but nobody claims that other standard specification series cars have different cars just because the drivers have changed the set up.

          3. @Don Sorry but no! The only US derived form of Motor racing that enjoyed any level of unsubsidised success was Formula 5000. Cart/Indy has failed numerous times to draw any significant support outside of the US. To put a little more perspective on that Formula 5000 was not a spec series.
            What’s that tell you?

      3. Other series already offer that.

        Most sports are commercialised and lose some of the pureness through that process.
        But even if they want to become a commercial succes there should be something unique and exciting about the sport. Copying others will not work in the long term.

        F1 is still a competition between teams in the first place responsible to design/build the best chassis, buy/built the best engine, hire/develop the best drivers, and run the best strategy/tactics.

        1. Biskit Boy (@sean-p-newmanlive-co-uk)
          16th July 2021, 15:35

          If you want to be the World Champion you have to drive in F1. Other series don’t offer that. Yet in F1 the driver makes a tiny percentage difference to a lap time. It makes no sense.

          The drivers must make more of a difference and cutting back on technical innovation helps acheive that and closer racing. Win win.

          I guess we want different things from F1. No squaring that circle!

          Happy F1 watching

  7. The 10th of a second has just doubled in cost! And don’t come back with a phony cost cap argument, the “financial engineering” department has just doubled in size. These bus sized cars will have no better passing ability: Too long, too heavy. Size and weight are the enemy of agility and quickness. Welcome to the new FINDY class ! Liberty should buy identical BUGATTI Verons in bulk, cut a hole in the roof and give 2 of them to each team. Go racing!

    1. Could just buy them karts, better racing, but sadly it’d probably more expensive than racing Veyron’s.

  8. The restrictiveness of the rules has been known for some time so that is no surprise to me. But what strikes me as strange about this mockup car are the wheels and tires. The decision to move to 18 inch wheels with lower profile tires is mostly an esthetic one, so why have they chosen to tone that down so much? The wheel covers are, to me at least, clearly painted to look like small wheels with balloon tires. Black rim blending into the black sidewall of the tire and then a sharply contrasting lighter circle in the middle. I was expecting them to do pretty much the opposite to really show off the change.
    The other thing that has bugged me ever since they presented the new tires years ago is that they also make the tires 50mm (!) taller. Up to 720mm, which is absolutely enormous. They increase the size of the wheel to get a lower profile tire but then they increase the size of the tire to get a taller sidewall. What? Makes no sense to me. Also, if they want less turbulence behind the cars they should make the tires smaller, not larger.

  9. So turning it into a pseudo spec series.

    Indycar+ here we come.

    1. It’s too restrictive already so making it even more so is the wrong thing to do.

      Pinnacle of the sport no more. Indycar+ formula, Indycar+ :(

      1. Hasn’t been the pinnacle for ages.
        ‘Advanced’ tech lives over in WEC, relevance (as much as there is) resides in Formula E, GT3 has all the technical diversity, and the good racing happens pretty much anywhere but F1.

        1. Formula E has spec chassis. GT3 is balance of performance, so the technical diversity is just window dressing. WEC is going to be balanced as well.

          it’s all bad for engineering in motorsport. Which is odd considering the drive right now to make engineering more accessible.

          1. F1 virtually has a spec chassis too. And engine.

            The diversity in GT3 is a result of of the BoP.
            The basic fact is that BoP doesn’t just allow for more diversity, it actively encourages it.
            Almost anything can be competitive under that system. How is that just window dressing?

            Whatever, race car engineering is just that – it’s a closed system that exists only to feed itself.

    2. I guess that’s the shape you come up with, as both were designed utilizing CFD. F1 now has a much tighter budget and this is how you reduce costs. If the racing is better (like IndyCar) who cares?

      1. The poster above is the sort of person who does care about both the racing and about the technical side of the sport.

        You might not want to have given it that impression, but your post comes across as a bit dismissive, even slightly contemptuous, that somebody might want to follow the sport for a reason other than just the racing itself – others might have an interest in the sport that extends beyond just what you want to watch it for.

  10. Martin Elliott
    16th July 2021, 12:58

    Anybody want to give the timetable to full construction drawings for up to 10 manufactures.
    If the TR/Specifications are so prescriptive, will FIA allow more sharing of manufacturing or contracting out.

    Mind you, FIA always say they’ve cut down on freedoms and then change rules or tighten interpretation during the season!!

  11. I imagine in 2022 the cars will all be quite similar to this model but as time passes we will see a little more variance. Teams will discover what works well and what doesn’t. There are some aspects of this model I like and some I don’t but this is aesthetics.

    F1 must be really careful to preserve the idea of engineering innovation. I don’t think anyone wants a spec-series and Ross and Liberty must know this. It will be very interesting to see what the actual team cars look like next year.

    There could of course be the possibility of one of the more mid-table or minor teams springing a surprise but and being quicker than the big guns. This is exciting.

  12. “Obviously there will be different philosophies for different teams. They will not look exactly the same as what we see today. But that will be for a expert eye. I think for the normal people it will look not too different to what we see today.”

    So not any different from the last several generations then? I can’t remember who said it, but they said if you remove the liveries from the cars, you would be hard-pressed to tell which car was which. Only the expert eyes of folks in F1 or hardcore fans like are on this site would be able to notice the difference between a Red Bull and an Alpha Tauri even though they were designed by completely different teams. I suspect teams teams that use the same power units and/or share unlisted parts will look very very similar. Teams that use different power units and don’t share listed parts will have differences that a more casual observer will pick up after a closer look.

    1. typo in last sentence *don’t share unlistedparts.

  13. Dreadful… they look like cheap toy cars. Riccardo was right.

    1. Long time no see…Two quick questions. First one is: Do you think both Mercedes and Williams are a bunch of traitors? And the second question is: Do you think Lando Norris will be chosen as the Mercedes substitute driver because of what happened in Imola?

    2. Well well well…no answer huh? I’ll give you them. Yes, both are traitors. Lando Norris can be chosen, and it’s a possibility.

    3. You and your “dOnT iNsUlT mAlDoNaDo LiKe ThAt” makes you totally wrong on what I said. YOU DID NOT WIN.

    4. Accept the 1-0 loss from your own goal and move on. The end

  14. Same as I said yesterday:

    “I’ll guess there’s less than a 5% chance any of next year’s cars will resemble anything near this design”

    One day on, view’s the same…

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