Serrated mirror mounts could be Mercedes' latest F1 marginal gain

The run of success that Mercedes has enjoyed in Formula 1 has been built on the foundations of marginal gains in all areas.

Serrated mirror mounts could be Mercedes' latest F1 marginal gain

The team knows there is no silver bullet to winning in F1: it's about perfecting every aspect of its car/engine combination and leaving no stone unturned to deliver the tiniest of benefits.

For if you add all the small gains together, they ultimately culminate in a decent step forward in performance.

Mercedes has shown itself willing to look to the smallest details, and it appears that it has dug deep again judging by a glimpse of the W12 that the team offered in a video it released of Valtteri Bottas getting a seat fit.

For a closer inspection of the car showed that Mercedes could be ready to adopt some interesting modification to its wing mirror mounts in a bid to further help airflow over the car.

Mercedes W12 wing mirror mounts

Mercedes W12 wing mirror mounts

Photo by: Mercedes AMG

The mirrors seen in the video show a longer tail section than is usually present, but also a stepped or serrated upper edge (highlighted in yellow). This suggests the team are once again looking for a way to use that surface to improve aerodynamic performance.

The mirror mount is also skewed in order to further influence the airflow passing by the cockpit. It's also worth remembering that there's no halo present here in the mock-up and the mirrors and their housings have become an extension of that structure from an aerodynamic perspective, with the team using all of these structures as a means of improving the global performance of the car.

Mercedes has famously used a serrated windshield at the front of the cockpit for years, but it's not the only area where the team has utilised the concept.

Here's five examples of when Mercedes have used serrated surfaces in search of extra performance...

Mercedes-Benz F1 W08 windscreen detail

Mercedes-Benz F1 W08 windscreen detail

Photo by: Sutton Images

Mercedes has had a serrated windscreen for a number of years now. The serrations are used to reduce the buffeting on the drivers' helmet.

Mercedes AMG F1 W06 front wing Russian GP

Mercedes AMG F1 W06 front wing Russian GP

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

The team added a serrated strip to the trailing edge of the W06's front wing in an attempt to improve the performance of the first and second flaps.

Mercedes AMG F1 W07 rear wing separated wing flap

Mercedes AMG F1 W07 rear wing separated wing flap

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

The W07 was treated to a similar solution, with a serrated edge found on the trailing edge of the mainplane and poised to improve the performance of the wing and DRS

Mercedes AMG F1 W10 DRS

Mercedes AMG F1 W10 DRS

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

The W10 and W11 have both been outfitted with a DRS actuator pod with a serrated trailing edge like the serrations used on some jet engine nacelles. Rather than having a straight edge, the serrations provide a different aerodynamic effect that improves the performance of the wing behind.

Mercedes AMG F1 W10 rear wing detail

Mercedes AMG F1 W10 rear wing detail

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

As part of a significant upgrade package introduced at the German GP in 2019, Mercedes added serration to its rear corner cut out. These help with the vortex usually created at the wing tip, reducing drag and increasing downforce.

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Series Formula 1
Teams Mercedes
Author Matt Somerfield
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