Formula 1 is developing proposals to incorporate active aerodynamics in the rules for 2026.
The goal is to compensate for the loss of downforce experienced when a car is trailing another, in order to enhance the overall performance of the trailing car.
Active aerodynamics are also being examined as a means to not only increase efficiency, but also to foster more competitive racing and prevent one-sided victories.
The latest update to F1’s technical regulations for the 2022 season, aimed at mitigating the loss of downforce for cars trailing others, has been well-received by drivers.
F1’s chief technical officer, Pat Symonds, stated at last week’s Autosport International that the cars for 2026 will be “even better than the ’22 cars”
Symonds stated that the active aerodynamics on the 2026 cars will mean that DRS won’t be necessary, according to Motorsport.
Symonds said that instead of reducing drag, the focus should be on increasing downforce for the trailing car, as this is what holds it back, as per DRS. He added that DRS is only reducing drag.
“The current proposal is to restore the downforce that the trailing car would have had if the leading car was not present. The focus is on not only facilitating overtaking but also on making the battle more intense.”
“What makes the sport exciting is the battle and the uncertainty of whether a pass will be successful or not. DRS has been criticized for making passing too easy and taking away from the thrill of the battle.”
Symonds disclosed that the team initially began with no preconceptions and examined various innovative options, but he acknowledged that the 2026 car will ultimately be “fairly standard.”
“The team went back to the basics and studied skirted ground effect cars to determine the ultimate potential of active aerodynamics.”
“The team explored various unconventional ideas such as fan cars, but the final design for the 2026 car will be more traditional, as that is the desired outcome.”
Active aerodynamics Formula 1 2026 Active aerodynamics Formula 1 2026
|2023 F1 Car Launches|
|Red Bull||RB19||03 February|
|Alfa Romeo||C43||07 February|
|Aston Martin||AMR23||13 February|
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