2018 F1

F1 bans ‘shark fins’ and ‘T-wings’ for 2018

F1’s strategy group has voted to ban the unpopular ‘shark fins’ and ‘T-wings’ for the 2018 season.

That is the claim of multiple authoritative media sources, including Germany’s Auto Motor und Sport and the DPA news agency, and Italy’s La Gazzetta dello Sport.

The appendages are unpopular for aesthetic reasons, and some ‘T-wings’ suffered notable on-track failures recently.

The FIA confirmed after the Paris meeting on Tuesday that from 2018 “designs incorporating the ‘T-wing and ‘shark fin’ will be strictly limited”.

It also emerges that the controversial cockpit protection system ‘Halo’ has been ruled out, with “priority” to now be given to the development of the transparent so-called ‘Shield’.

“The FIA aims to carry out track tests of this system during this season in preparation for implementation in 2018,” said the governing body.

And finally, teams have been told to improve the visibility of driver numbers and names on the cars, effective from next month’s Spanish grand prix.

Engine regulation changes for 2018

Presently, the drivers are limited to four engines for the entire Formula 1 season, that ‘long life’ allocation is set to drop to just three engines for 2018.

Auto Motor und Sport said the Strategy Group is set to discuss the future of the ‘three engines for 2018 Formula One’ rule during a meeting on Monday. The drop from 4 engines to 3 engines next year is designed to cut costs.

But F1 officials are tipped to argue that costs will in fact not go down. Manufacturers will have to re-design engines so that they are more reliable, and there could also be a performance trade-off with less power and weight.

“Mercedes, Ferrari, Renault and Honda have concluded that longer running life (for engines) means more development and more test cycles on the test bench.” Correspondent Michael Schmidt explained

A Mercedes official confirmed: “It’s going to cost a lot of money.”

So the Strategy Group will reportedly propose that the drop from 4 to 3 engines be scrapped, but the EUR 5 million price-reduction to customer teams be passed on anyway.

“That way, everybody wins,” said Schmidt. “For the private teams, the engine costs are reduced, while the manufacturers do not have to reinvent their power units.”

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