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Car construction

Force India F1 VJM04 is prepared. Force India F1 Team Factory Tour, Silverstone, England, 15 July 2011 Fabrication shop, Force India Factory, Silverstone, England. 29 May 2008. World © Moy/Sutton

The construction of Formula One cars and the materials used are strictly controlled by the regulations to maximise their safety.

The main structure of the car comprises a safety cell which contains the cockpit plus the flexible fuel cell, which is housed immediately behind (but separated from) the driver.

This safety cell must meet minimum size requirements and must have an impact-absorbing structure immediately in front of it. The design of the car must also include an additional impact-absorbing structure at the rear, behind the gearbox, and on the flanks of the car.

The car must have two roll structures to protect the driver in the event of the car overturning. One must be immediately behind the driver’s head, the other at the front of the cockpit, immediately ahead of the steering wheel.

The car and its survival cell must pass several strict impact, roll and static load tests before the car is allowed to take to the track.