Full extent of Mercedes’ Belgian Grand Prix upgrades revealed

Michelle Foster
Mercedes' revised floor at Spa being carried in by the mechanics. Belgium July 2023

Mercedes will introduce a modified floor at the U.S GP.

Mercedes have introduced their second big upgrade package of this season at the Belgian Grand Prix, and once again it is the sidepods that have caught the eye.

Earlier this season Mercedes made the call to drop their much-talked-about zeropod design, putting bulkier sidepods on the W14 with that playing a part in the team’s gains.

But with their progress stalling of late, Mercedes deposed by the upgraded McLaren as Red Bull’s closest rival, the Brackley team has brought another extensive round of upgrades.

Sidepods with a bump and reprofiled inlets

The team’s sidepod and cooling inlet evolution caught the attention in the paddock with Mercedes increasing the sideview coke tube camber, a bump on the ‘T’ and ‘R’ of the Petronas branding, while also reprofiling and increasing the size of their cooling inlets.

They have a new rear wing that is Spa-specific as well as a tweaked floor body having made small changes to the underside volume distribution. That should extract more local load and improve the flow to the diffuser.

Red Bull have also redesigned their engine cover with a reduced cooling exit area ahead of the rear top wishbones with Ferrari introducing a Spa-specific front wing.

McLaren, the most improved team in recent weeks, have made a few small changes to the wings most notably the rear wing endplate and the rear wing flap trims. Those are intended to reduce drag.

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Aston Martin have a new floor edge, rear wing and beam wing with latter aimed at reducing the load and drag to suit the characteristics of the circuit.

Alpine have a new front wing and floor body, the latter of which sporting director Alan Permane has called “very significant”, while Alfa Romeo have gone all out with Spa-specific wings, with a new front, rear and beam wing.

Further down the grid, AlphaTauri, who brought an extensive upgrade package to the previous race in Hungary, have a new rear wing while Williams have revised the FW45’s rear corner with reprofiled and shorter winglets on the rear brake ducts while also bringing a new front wing to the Spa-Francorchamps circuit.

Haas is the only team that has not brought a single upgrade to Spa.

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