Sunday, 11 february 2018, 08:14
As the new season edges closer the reality of what the introduction of the halo will do to a Formula 1 car is becoming clearer, and Mercedes has reacted positively to the changes, despite their skepticism along with the other teams in pre-season.
Nine of the 10 constructors voted against introducing the halo in a vote during the 2017 campaign, but this was later overruled by the FIA, who insisted its introduction, for safety reasons, be mandatory.
Mercedes' technical boss James Allison has been among the first to pass comment on the complexity of introducing the halo while maintaining the integrity of the chassis, and claims that the added strength could support a London double decker bus.
Allison said: "This is not a light piece of work, it is several kilos of titanium that needs to be put in the car.
"There are changes that we needed to do to accommodate it to ensure the overall car would still stay below the weight limit. It's also not light because it takes really high loads.
"We had to strengthen the design of the chassis so it would be able to take roughly the weight of a London double-decker bus sitting on top of the halo."
Allison also added that the designs teams are producing at the moment are exploratory and, like most other aspects of car design, he fully expects the halo to significantly evolve over time.
He added: "This is the first generation head protection that goes up, over and around the driver's head. But it won't be the last,”
"Nothing in F1 stands still for long. We will all be taking this first go and trying to improve it, trying to make sure the safety gets better but also the aesthetics.
"It's a bit of an acquired taste and we're still acquiring it and everyone else too—but I'm sure there are things we can do in coming seasons to make it also look nicer."