While the introduction of Halo last year significantly altered the appearance of the cars, it didn’t create as many problems for designers according to Chester.
“It wasn’t too big a change actually,” he reflected during last season. “The reg changes in terms of how we developed were fairly small.
“We still changed the car quite a lot because we learned a lot in ’17 that we wanted to put it into the ’18 car, But the main concepts were fairly similar.
“We took a little bit of a hit in terms of the engine cover [shark] fin, but it wasn’t too severe.”
While the new rules will force significant changes on this year’s cars, Chester said Renault’s 2018 design was shaped more by their objectives.
“It was more our own targets of what we wanted to change, where we wanted to make gains more than the regs,” he explained. “The biggest reg change structurally was the Halo, That was the one that influenced monocoque design.”
Halo “wasn’t a game-charger” for the design team last year, said Chester. “The changes from ’18 to ’19 will be much bigger,” he added.
While some technical chiefs such as Williams’ Paddy Lowe have downplayed the importance of the increased fuel limit, Chester indicated Renault were likely to take advantage of the increased limit.
“I think quite a few tracks you might do,” he said. “It depends which engine you’ve got of course.”
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