Daniel Ricciardo, Renault, Circuit de Catalunya, 2020

‘Hats off to Mercedes’ for DAS innovation – Ricciardo

2020 F1 season

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Renault’s Daniel Ricciardo has praised Mercedes for introducing their Dual Axis Steering innovation, saying it shows why the team is dominating F1.

[f1tv2020testa]Mercedes revealed the existence of the new device years, which appears to allow its drivers to adjust the toe angle of the front wheels by pushing the steering wheel forwards and backwards.

“Hats off to them because they have been dominant this whole turbo era yet they are still the ones pushing everyone else,” Ricciardo said in an interview for F1 TV.

“It should be us and everyone else pushing them and they’re not getting complacent,” he said. “And I think that’s why they’ve been so dominant.

“So they’re setting an example right now and as a competitor, I certainly respect that. And it’s good for everyone to see how far they’re willing to go.”

The FIA has indicated DAS appears to be legal based on the information Mercedes have given them. No other team appears to have run a similar system so far and Ricciardo says he hasn’t seen any indication that Renault or Mercedes’ other rivals were working on anything like it.

“We’ll soon find out,” he said. “I think everyone up until now – I’ve never heard of a system that talked about, so I don’t think maybe anyone had really thought about it.

“I don’t want to say anyone, but probably not many people talked about that. So I don’t know if it was ever a conversation had, but I’m sure the conversation’s happening in every team right now.”

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Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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14 comments on “‘Hats off to Mercedes’ for DAS innovation – Ricciardo”

  1. https://mobile.twitter.com/prodrive

    12 years ago we developed Active Toe Control to adjust toe angles on road cars, the same principle as Mercedes F1’s new DAS system to overcome the compromise of toe angles at low v high speeds. Such systems improve fuel economy and improve low speed agility/high speed stability.

    1. With technical rules restrictive as they are this is a huge achievement. Although, if you ask me I would never mess with steering wheel no matter what benefits it brings. It’s a safety issue and in my opinion excessive overload of the driver. Can you imagine fighting for position on the straight and holding the steering wheel in proper position to gain tenth of a second. Frankly, that’s absolutely insane.

      1. Over time the merc drivers get used to it and they don’t gonna think about it at all.

      2. You’re being ridiculously dramatic. The system is deployed on straights and is one physical movement, probably quite satisfying for the drivers. Infinitely less complex than twiddling little switches mid corner.

      3. I heard that drivers used to have to push down a pedal with one foot, while manipulating two other pedals with the other foot, while moving a lever with one hand to change gears, while steering. And if they messed it up, the car might stall or spin out of control. ;-]

        1. That used to be called Formula 1.

  2. They need to ban DAS before all racing simulator steering wheels become obsolete!
    I would hate for it to be added to the F1 game! I’m bad enough as it is!

    1. You can put it on a button like drs.. no biggie

    2. Just buy a flight yoke. ;)

      1. Now you’re talking!

    3. @eurobrun This is the most legit reason I heard so far for banning DAS.

  3. By the rules, anything like this must be activated mechanically and directly by the driver. No electronics, no hydraulics and no input based on track position (Renault, are you listening?).
    I believe it was Craig S. that pointed out that under braking, the wheel will (effectively) always go to the forward position due to the 4+ G deceleration. Likely the driver would be hard-pressed to pull the wheel back under braking.
    Not only is it brilliant, but there does not yet appear to be a clear consensus on what the system is intended to do.

  4. I’ve read some analysis saying this affects the lean of the tire, i.e., camber, not the toe-in. Which is it? Or is it both? It seems to me that toe wold be legal but camber is not, given that only toe is directly affected by “normal” steering.

  5. I agree with Ricciardo well done Merc. This is not a new idea and the fact that no one else has thought of applying it to an F1 car is their problem.

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