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DAS to be banned for 2021 F1 season

  • Published on 21 Feb 2020 13:35
  • comments 14
  • By: Fergal Walsh

The Dual-Axis Steering system that has been unveiled by Mercedes at winter testing in Barcelona will be outlawed in 2021.

The concept involves a change of the W11's toe angle following fore and aft movements on the steering wheel, which was first spotted on the second day of running in Barcelona.

Mercedes has been in discussions with F1's governing body the FIA over its legality and affirms that it has no concerns of it being ruled illegal this year.

MOREMercedes steering movements cause interest in Barcelona

However, that is set to change in 2021 following new wording in the technical regulations.

Article 10.5 of F1's 2021 technical regulations states: "The re-alignment of the steered wheels, as defined by the position of the inboard attachment of the relevant suspensions members that remain a fixed distance from each other, must be uniquely defined by a monotonic function of the rotational position of a single steering wheel."

Teams are currently monitoring the system, with the idea of either copying it or contesting its legality to the FIA.

F1 is keen to stamp out any regulation loopholes for 2021, as a new car concept with different technical regulations will be introduced.

A team has been formed to analyse the rules and approach them from the engineering side to ensure that no team can find hidden advantages and gain dramatically over its rivals with a unique concept.

Mercedes is going in search of a seventh consecutive drivers' and constructors' championship this year, as it remains undefeated in the turbo-hybrid era. 

Replies (14)

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  • f1dave

    Posts: 781

    Of course it will be banned, F1 is determined "to ensure that no team can find hidden advantages and gain dramatically over its rivals with a unique concept."
    This attitude is contrary to what F1 was designed to be. So much for being "the pinnacle of motorsport.

    • + 0
    • Feb 21 2020 - 15:21
    • There are cases where bans were apt. The oil burning is one such example. This, the FRIC and similar feats? I'd much rather they'd limit the efficiency instead of a complete ban.

      • + 0
      • Feb 21 2020 - 18:03
    • Snooky

      Posts: 121

      I understand is that it’s being banned to stop a team like Mercedes being dominant yet again, they clearly feel the benefits will be huge using this system and don’t want them running away with it refining the system.. That being the case, what I don’t understand is why stop it next year not this year to prevent yet another Merc domination? My guess is they don’t want to look stupid for letting it get this far given reports they’ve known for a long time and let it continue and allowed Merc to spend time and money on it, otherwise they’d just ban it now before teams start spending to develop their own version of it

      • + 0
      • Feb 21 2020 - 23:01
  • Well, I expect massive outrage about this and comparisons to the oil burning situation a couple of years ago. Even though I think it's clearly demonstrated that leading teams are ALWAYS in similar situations, always. Being at the top means pushing the envelope. Active suspension in the early 90 from Williams , traction control of mid 90s Benneton, Ferrari's slightly bigger wings in 99, blown diffusers, double diffusers, Fduct, whatever Ferrari was doing to their engine most of last year, and now DAS. Some were deemed illegal, some weren't. In some cases the championship was ruined because of them (think 1993 Williams or Benneton's illegal car in 94) and in others it made lite difference. Hopefully the DAS isn't that big in terms of performance.

    • + 0
    • Feb 21 2020 - 15:43
    • It won't be a matter of raw pace as much as endurance. As for the efficiency: It depends on a few factors, and it'll be more useful on some tracks than others, but it could potentially be a massive tyre saver. It just goes to show just how ahead Merc' could very well be the best team ever, in an era where we have a team like RB. But while I kinda moaned when they introduced this thing, I had hoped for a more instant 2020 effect from the FIA, but I'd hoped they wouldn't ban it, just regulate it. Just like I thought the FRIC ban was a mistake. But it's far easier to let them have their toy and ban it later, I guess.

      • + 0
      • Feb 21 2020 - 16:16
    • RogerF1

      Posts: 501

      No doubt the better money’d teams have engineers piling into the concepts and simulations now but unless it comes to a flat out meaningful advantage they may just hold back on physical changes until after the first couple of races. Surely this gizmo is only of significant enough potential on circuits with ‘airport style runways’ for main straights?

      • + 0
      • Feb 21 2020 - 17:07
    • siggy74

      Posts: 194

      If it saves on tire wear, and extends the life. then could have a serious effect on how many stops ;p

      But will the Prancing Horse, still have a straight line advantage.

      Changing rules for 2021, MMM now could Merc make this an auto thing that moves when the steering is rotated ;p

      • + 0
      • Feb 21 2020 - 20:19
  • f1ski

    Posts: 726

    Why not make F-1 a spec series then . Make rules that limit all equally and reward advantage. The oil burning to me was not to allow for an additional fuel source but to allow teams to get closer to stoichiometric fuel/air ratios and preserve reliablity. It increased power output and efficiency leading to faster lap times. If F-1 would return to refueling it could create a balance of performance by giving teams that aren’t doing as well more fuel and fuel flow to compensate for overall development. This increase in HP is cheap and this would create a more balanced field.

    • + 0
    • Feb 21 2020 - 21:24
    • I too think that refueling would really mix things up. It would be another variable that can add randomness to results when combined with factors like weather and safety cars. Unfortunately, there seems to be no appetite for refueling even among fans

      • + 0
      • Feb 22 2020 - 04:55
  • TheDentist

    Posts: 24

    FIA killing innovation in the sport! I guess it won’t be the pinnacle of motorsport for much longer! Why keep banning new innovation?!

    • + 1
    • Feb 21 2020 - 22:38
  • Mansell

    Posts: 104

    My thoughts on it.

    DAS is a grey area in the rules,

    If its gonna be banned for next season and to save extra cost it should outlawed now.

    • + 0
    • Feb 22 2020 - 03:59
    • If it was illegal they would have to enforce the rules now and ban it. Evidently, it's not illegal so they will change the rules for 2021 to be able to disallow it

      • + 1
      • Feb 22 2020 - 04:56
  • DGuzmanG

    Posts: 15

    Hello everyone!! CHILL for a bit. The DAS system was already forbidden for 2021 before Mercedes revealed it this week.

    NEWS just broke and misinformation is everywhere.

    This year's the regs say there can't be no active suspension items... But mentions nothing about direction. (Which is why it's legal)

    But 2021 years already had rules to very strictly limit suspension and direction and hence this system is not compliant to 2021 rules.

    IT IS NOT THAT THE FIA reacted once they saw the system. (Remember that according to James Allison, they have talked with the FIA about this system for quite some time).

    • + 0
    • Feb 22 2020 - 15:25
    • TheDentist

      Posts: 24

      FIA have known about the system for a long time as Mercedes have been discussing it with them, so they put it in the rules for 2021 knowing what Mercedes were upto...thus banning innovation.

      • + 0
      • Feb 23 2020 - 02:10

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