At the previous round in Brazil - on Friday morning only - the world champions trialled a new front suspension for 2016 on Hamilton’s car. In Abu Dhabi the testing of the next-generation geometry was stepped up a gear, with both cars running it in both Friday sessions. They also made back-to-back comparisons with the standard 2015 suspension.
All the components involved, such as rockers, shock absorbers, and even the pedals, were different, so it was a big job for the mechanics to switch things over. The most visible difference, indicated by the red arrows in the drawing above, was a new, third, hydraulically operated element (arrow) replacing the standard layout’s co-axial spring.