With Formula 1 set to undertake a massive revamp for the 2022 season, McLaren’s Lando Norris says next year’s car is very different to drive.
As the 2021 Formula 1 season nears its end, work is continuing amongst the teams in preparation for the build of an entirely new car for 2022.
With a sweep of changes entering F1 as of next year there has been a shift back towards cars that rely on more ground effects, something that we saw in years gone by prior to their banning, as opposed to cars with a heavy aerodynamics influence.
Although there has been a closing of the gap between constructors this year, the aim of the new regulations is to decrease that gap even further. With what is hoped to bring more competitive racing with easier overtakes.
But while drivers will have to wait until testing commences next year to physically sit behind the wheel of the car, simulation work is already well underway into helping get a better understanding of the different set up and handling characteristics.
“It’s a very different car to drive. In a way not as nice as this season,” Norris said to Motorsport.com. “But I think hopefully that’s the same case with every other team as well. And we’ll see, there’s no point trying to think it’s amazing or terrible.
“You just have to do the best job you can and hopefully, next season, we go to the pre-season test with a good car.”
F1 revealed the 2022 prototype car at the British Grand Prix. Fundamentally, each team will base their designs off that concept. However, as development progresses, each team will no doubt make whatever legal adjustments they can in order to draw out whatever additional speed and aerodynamics are on offer.
Designs will likely continue to change and evolve, with the final product not due out until much closer to preseason testing.
“The only car we’ve seen is the one at Silverstone,” said Norris. “The car we have in the factory, it’s not even a car. It’s a drawing and some paper. I don’t think we will see it for many more months, maybe not until next year in a way.
“We’ve seen some of the drawings and the designs for next season, but every week, it’s something new and something different, because there’s so many different things with the car. But every week it’s very easy to make changes and make it quicker and quicker.”