Mercedes introduced their biggest package of aerodynamic improvements in Austria for their 2018 F1 car W09 in Austria. The W09, which in France got a new specification of their M09 F1 engine, has completely revised sidepod concept, rear view mirrors, rear wing endplate and floor details.

Unlike Ferrari and Red Bull, which have the sidepod concept inspired by the innovative design of the Ferrari SF70H, Mercedes has retained the conventional, conventional sidepod concept on its W09, which, although very small, still do not have as much space beneath them, as in the case of Ferrari and Red Bull.

The new concept has changed somewhat, so the bottom edge of the opening (turquoise) is now integrated into a horizontal structure (yellow) that extends beyond the boundaries of the cooling openings and connects to a vertical aerodynamic vane.

The upper edge of the sidepod cooling opening (purple) is now curved on the outer edge and vertically connected to the horizontal vane above while the rear-view mirrors have additional support (orange) that has an aerodynamic function.

The mirrors now have dual support, which allows Mercedes to make the structure a bit lighter, but beside the first carrier, closer to the driver, there is a curved J-vane (vortex generator) that mimics the shape of the mirror carrier.

Mercedes W09 F1 2018 Austrian GP aero upgrade sidepod

In front of the new sidepod openings, Mercedes also added another smaller fin (bottom down) angled downwards for about 30 degrees, and some details in the lower part of this area that have an effect on how the airflow is shaped before going under the car.

The outer edge of the floor (yellow) is now curved while before it was in the form of a blade.

Another look of updated sidepod concept and mirrors on the 2018 Mercedes W09 F1 car.

For comparison, in the picture below you can find the old (upper part) and new (lower part) sidepod configuration.

Mercedes has also changed the rear wing endplate that are now inspired by the McLaren solution they have been using since the start of last season, which this year was copied by Renault on their R.S.18.

The rear wing endplate have to be narrower at their lower part according to the rules in order to accomodate rear brake ducts and winglets and Mercedes has now, as well as McLaren, decided to split these two (wider upper and lower lower) and add vertical upper slits (yellow under the EPSON caption) .

Also, they have added two upwash strips (turquoise) that follow the direction of airflow in that area and help connecting the rear wing and diffuser upwash.

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