Scuderia Ferrari has focused heavily on suspension geometry, internal aerodynamics and cooling during the 2017 Formula One season, but even more over the past few races, as the Maranello team has already begun preparations ahead of 2018 Formula 1 championship. A significant aero update was also prepared for the United States Grand Prix and the race in Mexico, which took place last weekend.
A new diffuser is at the centre of the update, which follows a similar design to that seen during the post-Hungary test back in August but not raced since. Whereas before there was a stepped central section, the revised area merges with the upper wall and is almost completely flush with it (yellow arrow). This allows airflow to rise from beneath the car at a much greater angle, increasing expansion and inducing more upwash at the rear of the car. Additional ALM-made metal fins were also installed to the rear crash structure above to add to this effect (red arrows).
A more ramped central section requires more control over the air that is passing through it, so other areas have been adjusted to make this work properly. Turbulence ejected from the rear tyre into the diffuser’s side is managed by a series of scalloped slots along the SF70H’s floor, which in this latest update have been reduced from five to four and bunched closer together. The front-wing was also given some attention: a tiny out-turned fin, joined to the back of the endplate by a slender strut, further pushes the air around the front tyre, drawing its wake away from the sidepods and bargeboards.