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I really wonder, so if I would try to make the simplest, most stripped down but still legal F1 car, what parts are absolutely needed?

I'm gonna guess the halo, safety cell and 4 tires are mandatory, but are there any other parts that are mandatory per F1 rules?

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  • This is an interesting question. I know there are all sorts of regulations about front/rear wings, barge boards, sidepods etc, and that you'll be a heck of a lot slower without all those aerodynamic components, but I don't know whether they're actually required, per se.
    – F1Krazy
    Jan 12 at 16:54
  • Yeah I guess that a car with only the required parts would be too slow to be allowed on track. Like I wonder, is, per regulations, a motor required? It would not be allowed on track yes, but it would still be legally, per rules, a F1 car.
    – Fredy31
    Jan 12 at 17:31
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According to the set of technical regulations written by the FIA, to be considered "legal" by F1 standards, the cars must follow a set very specific and detailed rules that affect each part of the car, including the following:

  • aerodynamic Components
  • mass
  • power unit
  • fuel system
  • oil
  • coolant systems
  • charge air cooling
  • electrical systems
  • transmission systems
  • suspension
  • steering systems
  • wheels
  • tyres
  • brake system
  • car construction
  • survival cell (chassis)
  • safety structures
  • materials
  • fuel
  • engine oil

If any of these rules are broken for any part listed above, then the car is not considered as a legal F1 car.

For example, the following article states that the plank assembly below the car must be fitted, so a car without a plank would not be deemed an F1 car.

3.5.9 Plank Assembly Below the central surfaces of the Floor Body, the plank assembly must be fitted. consisting of the plank, the skids, and the mountings. The requirements of this article must be satisfied when considering both sides of the car.

There are obviously many more parts that are made "mandatory" through these sets of regulations, such as for the DRS. But I noticed many parts mention that a part declared as "X" must follow a set of rules, such as below, but it doesn't say that the part must be on the car. So perhaps reading through the whole regulations would be enough to determine which parts are mandatory and which aren't.

3.10.2 Pylons Bodywork declared as “Rear Wing Pylon” must: a. Lie within RV-RW-PYLON. 2022 Formula 1 Technical Regulations 31 15 October 2021 © 2021 Fédération Internationale de l’Automobile Issue 7 b. On any Z plane, when considering both sides of the car, only contain no more than two closed symmetrical sections with a maximum total area of 5000mm2 . This does not apply if the complete section lies within 30mm of the Exhaust Tailpipe defined in Article 3.8.2. For any complete closed section outside of RV-TAIL-EXH, the thickness of each section may not exceed 25mm when measured in the Y direction.

The full set of rules can be found on the FIA's website under regulations: FIA Regulations. The set of regulations concerning the legality of F1 cards can be found under "technical regulations".

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