In photos: Mercedes guide to 'impactful' 2021 F1 aero changes

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While the major regulation changes have been postponed until 2022, this season, Formula 1 has introduced several smaller alterations to the cars.

The aim of these measures was to cut downforce, or at least limit the potential gains, after concerns grew over the growing forces being placed on the tyres due to ever-increasing cornering speeds.

Pirelli has also taken action by introducing a new tyre construction that is more resilient to the loads being generated by the fastest cars in F1 history.

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Initially, it was thought lap times would be around half a second slower than last year as the result of the changes, but already some teams are suggesting much of the lost performance has been regained.

Still, Mercedes believe the tweaks to the floor, diffuser and rear brake ducts could be enough to threaten their status as the dominant team in F1 this season.

"Setting expectations is always dangerous and I find it difficult because as soon as the car crosses the line at the final race of the season in Abu Dhabi, I start worrying about the next year," team boss Toto Wolff commented.

"There are several changes to the cars this season which might look small, but they are quite impactful from a performance point of view. So, we can’t take any comfort from our good results in 2020.


"Every winter, there are always indications that someone else might have done a better job, so we must keep pushing.

"That scepticism and hunger drive us and get us fired up for every new season – because the scoreboard goes to zero and there’s always more performance to be found. And that’s exciting. I enjoy this time of year as we drive into the unknown."