A behind the scenes video shot at McLaren. Design engineer Scott Bain is in charge of everything the driver comes into contact with in the cockpit. Here he shows us the chassis mock up and, as Lewis Hamilton tries it for size, explains how important it is to get the driver comfortable before you build the first chassis for real
Formula One – Ultimate Racing Machines
A Formula One car is a single-seat, open cockpit, open-wheel racing car with substantial front and rear wings, and an engine positioned behind the driver, intended to be used in competition at Formula One racing events. The regulations governing the cars are unique to the championship. The Formula One regulations specify that cars must be constructed by the racing teams themselves, though the design and manufacture can be outsourced
The modern day Formula One cars are constructed from composites of carbon fibre and similar ultra-lightweight materials. The minimum weight permissible is 642 kg (1,415 lb) including the driver but not fuel. Cars are weighed with dry-weather tyres fitted. Prior to the 2014 F1 season, cars often weighed in under this limit so teams added ballast in order to add weight to the car. The advantage of using ballast is that it can be placed anywhere in the car to provide ideal weight distribution. This can help lower the car's centre of gravity to improve stability and also allows the team to fine tune the weight distribution of the car to suit individual circuits.