Current Mercedes world champions must significantly reduce their costs within the budget constraint in force from this season, and technical director James Allison explained in which areas they are saving.
The budget cap for 2021 was supposed to be $ 175 million, but due to special circumstances surrounding the pandemic, the amount was reduced to $ 145 million for 2021, $ 140 million for 2022, and $ 135 million for 2023.
This does not include the salaries of drivers and the three highest paid employees, as well as activities that do not affect car performance such as marketing activities, sick pay, maternity leave and medical examinations of all employees.
The three largest teams – Mercedes, Red Bull and Ferrari – had budgets in excess of $ 450 million for 2019, so they were also hit hardest by the budget constraint, with Renault ($ 272 million) and McLaren ($ 269 million) and Aston Martin ( $ 188 million) will have to reduce their costs only slightly because the above-mentioned costs are excluded from the $ 145 million limit.
Mercedes ‘ James Allison says the best way to save money is to have a fast enough car at the start of the season because they would have to spend less money on development or bug fixes.
“Probably the biggest weapon we could have to attack the new financial regulations would be to present a car that is fast from the start,” Allison said.
“Because if it’s fast from the start it will be cheaper to keep it fast throughout the season.”
“So we hope to incorporate enough good things into it by the beginning of the year so that our plans develop in the direction of high-level work under the new constraints under which we fight with the same weapons as everyone else.”
Allison says a number of factors will affect overall costs over the course of the season and explains the new approach to parts design and manufacturing.
“That means we had to figure out how to make the parts on the car last longer, how to make them cheaper, while maintaining the same performance as before, despite the fact that our budget was reduced.”
“It’s a huge challenge, and building a car is only part of it.”
“We have to operate the car, develop the car and we have to endure the whole season with all the uncertainties we face like collisions, component durability and the need to spend resources on repairing them.”