Renault, Mercedes to run ‘blown’ diffusers

Renault and Mercedes GP will run modified diffusers at this weekend’s European Grand Prix at Valencia in the hope of a distinct performance gain.

The two teams, along with Ferrari, will incorporate ‘blown’ diffusers on their cars, which are said to distribute exhaust gases through the diffuser to add downforce. The idea has essentially been copied from Red Bull, who have run it all season on their RB6, the back end of which is extremely efficient with its waste gases and uses them to advantage.

During a phone-in at the start of the week, McLaren engineering director Paddy Lowe acknowledged that it could bring speed, and that his team were behind schedule on bringing their own version to the track.

“That is a concern,” he said. “I think we’ll have to see how they get on with it. It’s a shame that some others have been slightly quicker than we were getting it, but we are where we are. I think we’ll have to do what we can and see.

“It all depends at each circuit on how the different characteristics suit some cars and not others. For instance Ferrari really struggled in Turkey. I can’t predict where they’ll end up any more really than I can predict where we’ll end up.

“What’s very interesting and really great for the interest in the sport is the variation you get in very fine differentials between teams as you go through the different circuits with different characteristics. It’s not very predictable.”