A radical new qualifying format was not the only regulation change announced following this week’s F1 Strategy Group meeting, with the FIA announcing changes to cars that are “designed to deliver a faster, more spectacular” Championship.
Various bodywork changes have been agreed to in order to “create more exciting cars, delivering additional downforce to increase speeds and lower lap times.”
As of 2017, front tyres will increase from 245mm to 305mm with the rears up from 325mm to 405mm. The car’s width will also increase from 1400mm to 1600mm with the front wing up to 1800mm and the rear to 950mm.
The maximum weight of the car has increased 20kg to 722kg in order to accommodate the new regulations.
In news that will be music to the ears of many fans, the FIA has also said that good progress has been made on a number of matters surrounding power units, including “further improvement of noise”. This comes after most drivers said that the changes made to exhausts ahead of the 2016 championship had not achieved the desired effect of increasing engine noise.
Sebastian Vettel was one of the few members of the F1 paddock to deliver a positive assessment of the sound of the new exhausts, stating: “It is still not as loud as it could or should be but it is a lot better than it was, now sounds a bit more like Formula 1.”
The other notable change was the approval of cockpit protection for the 2017 season. The ‘halo’ concept is currently the preferred option, but the FIA revealed that transparent cockpit protection is also being evaluated.
“All stakeholders are working together to make this a reality,” an FIA statement read.