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Features :: FIA 2008 technical regulations summary

New technologies which give a team an advantage for one season but which are then adopted by all teams for subsequent seasons at significant expense will be banned after the end of the first season (Article 2.5).

  • Reason: To reduce costs. This allows a team which discovers a new technology to benefit from it, but prevents Formula One as a whole then spending money on the same technology only to leave all the teams in exactly the same (relative) positions as before.

The rear wing is split in two.

  • Reason: Research indicates that this will produce a wake in which the car behind will perform much better, thus facilitating overtaking.

Changes to the bodywork regulations to reduce downforce while maintaining drag levels so as to avoid an increase in cornering speeds over 2006 levels (Article 3).

  • Reason: Safety

Changes to the bodywork regulations at the front of the car to make the car behave better in traffic (Article 3).

  • Reason: To facilitate overtaking.

Limitations on possible 'interesting' areas of aerodynamic research (Article 3).

  • Reason: To reduce costs.

The minimum weight is reduced from 605 to 550kg (Article 4).

  • Reason: To eliminate the cost of purchasing 55kg of very expensive high density ballast for each car and transporting it all over the world. Cars will also be safer without this extra weight.

Engine to be subject to a rev limit of 19,000 rpm, with a possible increase to 20,000 rpm in consultation with the competing teams (Article 5.1.3).

  • Reason: To reduce costs and to redirect engine research towards road-relevant technologies.

A standard electronic control unit for engine and gearbox to be used at all times in Formula One (Article 8.2).

  • Reason: To reduce costs, eliminate driver aids such as traction control and allow the FIA to check engine use and testing mileage.

Gear ratios to have a minimum thickness of 12mm (Article 9.3.3).

  • Reason: To reduce costs by making gearboxes more robust.

Tyre pressures may be adjusted by the driver while the car is moving (Article 12.5).

  • Reason: Safety, particularly during safety car periods.

Maximum wheel diameter increased to 640mm front and 710mm rear, with maximum widths of 365mm front and 460mm rear (Article 12.4) with slick tyres.

  • Reason: To increase 'mechanical' grip to compensate for reduced aerodynamic downforce to facilitate overtaking.

Only permitted materials may be used to construct the car (Article 15.1).

  • Reason: To reduce costs.

At least 5.75% (m/m) of fuel must be from biological sources (Article 19.4.5).

  • Reason: To keep ahead of developments in fuel for road cars.

From 2009 each team may make only two changes of bodywork after the start of the season (Article 3.15).

  • Reason: To reduce costs.

It is intended to allow systems for energy storage and recovery (hybrid systems) from 2009, provided this can be done without causing budgetary difficulties for any of the competing teams.

In addition to the proposed 2008 Technical Regulations it is intended to make changes to the Formula One Sporting Regulations for 2008. These will be submitted to the World Motor Sport Council on March 22, 2006 and will include:

  • arrangements for a single tyre supplier in 2008
  • three - Event engines
  • four - Event transmissions
  • weight penalties for early replacement of engine or gearbox
  • testing restrictions
  • a limit of two cars per team at an Event
  • the date for the opening and closing of entries for 2008

It is not intended to renew the Concorde Agreement provisions which prevent teams selling components or complete chassis to other competitors. It is proposed to allow an entirely free market in this area.

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