Mercedes F1 W05 - compact front suspension 12 February 2014
While McLaren have bodied the rear suspension of their new car to boost downforce, Mercedes have bodied (red arrow) the lower wishbone of their front suspension in order to improve frontal air penetration, reduce drag and lessen the interference with airflow as it heads towards the front of the sidepods. To achieve this, Mercedes have used a very narrow angle for that lower wishbone (yellow area shows the typical angle), with the rear leg mounted far further forward than normal. This presents a significant engineering challenge, as the reduced angle makes it tougher for the wishbone to withstand the huge stresses it comes under during braking. Ensuring it's strong enough will almost certainly have meant adding weight, but the team must believe the aero gains justify this. Also note the top suspension members and steering link follow the same line, also aiding penetration.