F1 2022 car model and Mercedes 2022 car teaser image

Mercedes tease their new car for F1’s radical 2022 rules

2022 F1 season

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Mercedes have become the first team to indicate how their new car for the 2022 Formula 1 season could look.

The team shared an image on social media using the slogan “new year, new Me-rcedes” indicating how their 2022 car could look. A Mercedes spokesperson confirmed the image is of a show car obtained by the team.

F1 has introduced radical new technical regulations this year which will drastically alter the look of the cars. During last season it displayed a show car which presented a possible interpretation of the rules.

The image revealed by Mercedes also reflects the geometries of the new regulations. It differs from F1’s show car in several obvious respects. The front wing shown in the Mercedes features three elements instead of four, its sidepods are noticeably larger and its rear wing is shaped differently.

The appearance of the teaser image comes after Mercedes shared video of the W13’s new 2022-specification power unit being fired up for the first time last week. No other team has revealed as much of their 2022 plans with the start of pre-season testing still over seven weeks away.

The team have claimed the previous eight consecutive constructors’ championships and took seven drivers’ titles in a row until last year when Lewis Hamilton lost the championship to Red Bull’s Max Verstappen.

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Mercedes 2022 car teaser image
Mercedes 2022 car teaser image

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Will Wood
Will has been a RaceFans contributor since 2012 during which time he has covered F1 test sessions, launch events and interviewed drivers. He mainly...

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54 comments on “Mercedes tease their new car for F1’s radical 2022 rules”

  1. Well, they used the most part of the season developing the 2022 car according to toto. So the expectations are extreme regarding this car.
    So did ferrari and haas.
    Interesting to see the final design. It’s not common to give away things this early. I guess it’s a nice mockup.

    1. so might have Alpine, according to Alonso

    2. Well, they used the most part of the season developing the 2022 car according to toto

      Which usually means that they didn’t… They came up with a major update in Silverstone – an almost B-version of their car – and they continued upgrading it though with a slower pace till the end of the season.

      1. @tifoso1989 If they did any further development, that was only minor as all teams certainly stopped wind tunnel development by the summer break at the very latest.

      2. This, plus let’s not forget in Brazil Mercedes brought a new and even powerful engine with + 10 horse power, like “no Mickey, no no Mickey, that was not right” said

        1. like “no Mickey, no no Mickey, that was not right” said

          I see what you did there :)

        2. Jean-Christophe
          5th January 2022, 0:36

          When you’re not the side being wronged you can only laugh about it. It was just ridiculous, right? He should have just shut up and accept it. It’s probably better to say “take those cars away, we just need one lap”. Well, hope that never happens to you.

  2. So the regs really were prescriptive. That’s depressing. Let’s hope devil is in the detail.

    1. I think this is the base version, useful for PR and testing other parts in Pre season when everyone is watching. Things like fancy aero or tricks aren’t going to be shown off just yet. There’s still time for other teams to adapt and copy.

  3. Nice too much surprising, although the rear wing shape looks slightly interesting. Seems to have some kind of curved shape to it, although that may just be the photo (it’s hard to tell where the wing stops and the draws/desk behind starts).

    Not expecting this to be fully representative of the finished product though.

  4. Andy (@andyfromsandy)
    1st January 2022, 14:04

    I wonder if the design of the front wing will make it stronger and as a consequence cause more punctures to the car in front?

    1. Andy (@andyfromsandy)
      1st January 2022, 14:06

      Curious to see how DRS works with a V shaped wing.

      1. @andyfromsandy I’m hoping that we never see them use DRS.

        I’ve been waiting for a decade now to finally see the silly artificial gimmick killed off. I’m already disappointed/frustrated that it’s even still on the cars this year given how many of those in charge have repeatedly said the goal was/is to remove the need for it & that was (Or at least should) have been one of the primary goals of the new regulations.

        I just don’t like it, Never have & never will. I don’t find any of the racing or overtaking it creates to be especially fun, exciting or memorable. It’s nothing more than quantity over quality as far as i’m concerned. More uninteresting, Too easy, Unexciting & forgettable push of a button highway passes half way down a straight in a pre-determined FIA approved passing zone at a time when drivers meet FTA approved passing criteria. What i’d rather see is real racing, proper overtaking that comes down to pure driver skill on the brakes which are actually exciting & memorable.

        1. @roger-ayles I share your opinion about drs. I sum up all you’ve said about it with the following sentiment similar to yours. There isn’t a single drs pass in the history of it’s existence that will be remembered and talked about for minutes, let alone the decades about which some historic moves have been discussed sans drs.

          The best I have been able to surmise from what Brawn said about retaining it (he’s never been a fan if it either), and it was a while back now, was that he just wanted to keep it as a stopgap measure in case teams found ways around the regs and continued to make their cars create more dirty air than intended, or as well be more sensitive to dirty air than intended. My hope is that if it is indeed present on the cars this season they will find they don’t need to use it.

          But I also remain optimistic from what Domenicali suggested might happen with drs. He suggested they could keep it but use it differently and that being merely as a way to save fuel and lower lap times. Citing that they don’t need downforce on straights anyway, he suggested all drivers would be able to employ drs every time they are in the designated drs zones, having nothing to do with it being only for cars within a second of the car ahead. That way drs would not be used as a ’push to pass button’ and it would be fair for all drivers. To me that sort of usage would remove all the negatives that so many such as us have had about drs from the getgo. I’d be absolutely fine with drs used in a way that would never create an unfairness on the track, and let’s face it, it’s been a bandage attempt to make up for cars not meant to race closely, and those are now gone.

        2. One thing I thought might work for DRS is if the detection zone changed, maybe to 1-2 seconds behind instead of 0-1 seconds. That way it would allow a car to stay close and counter the dirty air, but the actual overtake would have to be done properly. Hopefully the 2022 cars will indeed eliminate the need for it entirely.

        3. To me I t’s not the DRS which I dislike, but the restrictive use of it.
          Would be fine if all could use it all the time.

          1. Agree @robbie and jff. For me, it’s the helplessness of the car in front. And the pathetic, unnecessarily complex prerequisites for its use.

            Just let them all use it wherever their bravery allows. Or restrict it to ten uses per race. Or, as suggested, in a set zone (to avoid dangerous cornering) if we really must.

            But great defense is as important in wheel to wheel fights as the overtake. Hence, DRS has given us nothing.

  5. I highly doubt the final product will look anything like this, especially regarding the front wing, the nose section and the sidepots. Mercedes would be silly to indicate anything of significance in this image. Btw, who’s seing a V-shaped rear wing? I think it’s only a reflection, the line seems to be pretty straight.

    1. There are enough scuff marks and sanding marks where the nose joins the body to make me think this might be a “real” chassis– maybe a 60% scale mockup for the wind tunnel.

      So this is probably the “alpha” version, and they’re at least two revisions past that.

  6. i think mercs gonna blow the competition outta the water because they didnt spend tokens last year.

    1. Barry Bens (@barryfromdownunder)
      1st January 2022, 16:33

      Right, because they can carry them over to 22’s car and everyone else has to build their car (according to new regulations which ar 99% different) with 21’s parts

    2. Their token spend got ditched out in failed crashtests, which led to them eventually giving up and not having anything make it onto the car @bigmula.

      But as @barryfromdownunder reminds us, even if they really had meant not to spend any tokens it would not mean they save them up for next season, at best they would have saved some money and windtunnel/cfd time.

      1. According to James Allison, the tokens were allocated, but never spent, because Mercedes had to divert resources to recovering downforce from the unnecessary floor change.

        Mercedes has enough staff and resources that I suspect most development was done on the 2022 car *last* year, and this year’s development budget was split probably 80/20 between the W13 and W12.

        1. 2022 gon be a bad look for RB, with all that pressure talk, not knowing they were fighting against w11 all along lol.

  7. Wow, things I like there:
    – the nose isn’t such a wide disgusting platipus like in the presentation car
    – the front wishbones are finally again at a normal height, symmetrically to the axis of the wheel
    – the front tyre winglets are small, although I’m afraid they’re just hiding a more sophisticated design for now
    – the general cleaner look due to fewer winglets

    Things I dislike:
    – the rear wing looks terrible, the flowery, curvy, shape looks flabby like nothing that belongs on a racing car. It looks like a plastic piece that melted in the sun, utterly bad.

    1. It looks like the nose is straighter, where the showcar had a more tapered middle section, making it seem to be wider at the tip, but really they seem almost identical there.

      If I am not mistaken, those tyre winglets will be prescripted parts that the team cannot alter the shape of, so there is almost certainly not going to be any “more sophisticated designs” going round.

  8. Everything is an improvement over the lawn-movers that appeared once, and then the duck-bills…
    …or when it was clear that half of a six hundred person team was working on the front-wing.

    1. @rufernan I disagree.

      I liked those things because to me that sort of technical & engineering is a huge part of what F1 is.

      Boring designs that offer no/little design freedom, Where we are not getting the complex & intricate design concepts & differences between teams just isn’t F1 anymore & removes one of the parts of F1 that I have adored over the past 40-ish years. I love those designs, I love watching those small developments, I love seeing new little flaps, slot gaps & stuff & working out what they do. That is a big part of the draw of F1 to me, What has kept my interest all these years & why I have always watched F1 over the many other categories.

      How simple the 2022 design is just makes it look more like an Indycar. It reminds me of an Indycar was a popular comment from F1 fans when the initially revealed the concept at Silverstone, That should be a worry because you should never be able to compare an F1 car to a spec series or more junior category car. It’s lost that extreme that F1 has always had which has always made it look steps above anything else.

      It looks/feels to me like F1 is losing it’s identity. It’s becoming nothing more than Indycar+.

      1. F1 has always been a spec series. Unless you define spec only as car built under contract by Dallara.

        Spec explains why real innovation was very quickly banned – from skirts, to six-wheels to turbine – if you were around to see and hear those things. They were all beautiful to me. Also different engine formats and tire suppliers. From unlimited refueling, special fuels, to running non-stop if you chose to.

        All spec now: Here we’ve just gone from ‘ugly’ spec to ‘prettier’ spec.

        This time though with some genuine existential purpose since F1 would disappear relative to E in a few years.

        1. I completely agree with that. F1 tech regulations should be fully open. They should regulate only regarding safety and compatibility (wheelbase, overall size, etc) so cars would fit in the box, weight stations, etc.
          The limit should be only applicable to budget. We’ve seen that limiting the tech specs was not reducing the budget, instead of investing $10M in engine, suspension, or tire tech, the spend those $10M in CFD simulations, wind tunnel, etc. Even the engine should be a free spec. I am sure we could see H2 engines, electric engines, etc as part of the crazy solutions we saw in the 60’s and 70’s.
          The path the F1 regulations are following has a sad ending, a glorified GP2 spec car. Boring.

  9. Looks worrying similar to the F1 spec design.

    I honestly do fear that we are going to end up with a pseudo-spec series of cars that all look near identical because of how the Indycar+ restrictive regulations enforce such similar designs.

    That just is not F1 to me. Regulations should be more open rather than this restrictive, Especially with the cost cap in place. Open up the regulations to allow for clever ideas & designs which will likely give us greater variance in designs.

    More restrictions just gives us this Indycar+ pseudo-spec series that I fear we are going towards.

    1. Considering the amount of news stories generated from F1’s technical aspect this kind of thing does set a worrying trend.

      No one is talking about Indycar at the moment. Indycar is not the model to follow.

      1. Alan Dove,
        I think the most worrying thing is if any team will find a loophole within these already restrictive rules, Ross Brawn and Tombazis lately stated that they are ready to change the rules mid-season to not let anyone getting away with it.

    2. + 200%

    3. Biskit Boy (@sean-p-newmanlive-co-uk)
      2nd January 2022, 10:26

      Regulations should be more open rather than this restrictive, Especially with the cost cap in place.

      I lament the more open rules of years gone by, but I see no alternative to the current direction of travel. Restrictive rules will encourage cheaper and closer racing. Both of which are desperately needed (unless anyone can make an argument for the opposite). Spec is not a dirty word, its a necessity for the future of motorsport. F1 is not totally immune.

      One of the big problems with the cost cap is if one team does steal a march on the others by way of a major gain in performance through innovation, then the others would need to spend extra to catch up. This is not a good recipe for close competition on track. Hence the promised crack down if this happens.

      Last season I reckon the lap times were about 5% driver 95% car. This hardly makes F1 a good “World Championship for Drivers” does it? I think the new rules will move this in the right direction, although not nearly enough for me. 50/50 would be my ideal, but I’d settle for 25/75. Anything wrong with that? It may mean less pay drivers…

      I’m a bit of a dreamer I know, but my hope for the future is 26 cars, lots of very close racing for the lead and any one 9 or 10 drivers that could win races.

  10. The wheel fairings look a bit weird, but they have a function, so I’m ok with them, but the new front and rear wings look absolutely class. Hopefully they will have the intended effect. Fingers crossed. 🤞🏻

  11. Imagine if this is a double whammy. They think no one believes that this is the final desing but when they do the real release it will be the exact same car. Doubt it but it could be quite a trick.

  12. Barry Bens (@barryfromdownunder)
    1st January 2022, 16:35

    Oh wow, a computer render which is near identical to what was shown by F1 itself earlier in the year. Surely Mercedes will win the championship because they are so early!1!1!!

    This is almost as bad as when a company ‘teases’ the release date of a video in which the release date of a product is teased

    1. Computer render? looks like a wind tunnel model with crazy lighting to make it shiny.

    2. That “computer render” has scuff marks all over the front end.

  13. I’ve saved a copy of this image to my desktop so I remember to compare it to the car at launch. I can’t see any benefit in giving anything away this early so it’ll be interesting to see if it’s a bluff or if that is the 2022 car.

  14. I’d quite like the dark green metallic colour of the render but that is probably as much of a bluff as the design

    1. Its the version they prepared for Aston Martin probably ;)
      Hence the color.

  15. The side pods on the Merc are huge! Yuki Tsunoda could crawl into them and hide.

  16. Craig Scarborough has said on Twitter that it’s just a standard show car, seen before.

  17. If you open it up in a photo editor and edit the contrast and brightness it can be seen pretty clearly. the rear wing is ridc and definitely for show.

  18. This looks like one of their cars from a few years back that is just tweaked for the new regulations.
    The for 2022 car will be a bit different.

  19. It’s got 4 wheels and a halo. The rest is taken with a pinch of salt.

  20. Nice to see the silver back, but prepared for the backlash from the eternally repressed snowflake far left who will see it as a form of ra cism. Mercedes no longer support us!!1!

  21. The Silver Arrow is back? If so, perhaps they could keep the all black overalls to stay true to the Black Lives Matter support they started two years ago?!

  22. The article’s been updated after we obtained a few more details about the image.

  23. I notice a few comments questioning the V-shaped rear wing. I may be misunderstanding this but I don’t think this is a design unique to Mercedes. I thought the rear wing was heavily specified in the new regs, and that all the cars are going to have a rear wing like this, pretty much identical. As for the V shape, I believe this is to reduce turbulence, so that cars can follow closer. About a decade, ago a research group came up with a split rear wing, basically a wing over each rear wheel and a space in the middle, which they predicted would give almost as much downforce with a massive reduction in turbulence, but the big disadvantage for F1 teams was that the rear wing is their primary advertising billboard, and the splitter recommendation was quietly ignored. I’m guessing this V shape builds on the splitter concept, whilst still providing sufficient space for a giant logo.

  24. really? I thought they were gonna spend it on a new nose but they backed out due to overall lack of downforce no?

  25. I think perhaps Mercedes PR are attempting to focus attention on the Constructors Championship they won, after Toto managed to Bury that achievement with a tantrum. Is this the 2022 car….. No of course not, it’s an evaluation model.

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