Mercedes DAS: The reigning champions’ technical director James Allison is not completely satisfied with the leverage they got out of the DAS system, as it is banned from next season.
James Allison is satisfied with what Mercedes achieved with DAS this season, but not with what could have been had it not been banned from next season onwards. He calls the current – and effectively the only – version a “crude” one. It did help Mercedes dominate the qualifying Saturdays, with tyre temperatures an issue during the cold months in Europe this season.
“I’d say it’s been probably most of what we hoped for.”
“We’d hoped that we would be able to use it more over the course of an event from old tyres to new, that the drivers would find corners where it was just easier to nip round the corner with a little tweak of DAS because it does change the steer response.”
“Maybe in a full season where we were not so COVID-distracted and where we might have had more chance to develop and test. Then we perhaps could have got the fine control of it better established rather than what we ended up being limited to, which was the first iteration, which is a relatively crude lock-to-lock type of control.”
Mercedes sad with DAS ban, not angry: James Allison
As DAS was a mechanical innovation, it fell under the ambit of the FIA regulations. It also helped that the German team consistently kept in touch with the governing body while developing it. But with it being banned from next season, Allison is lamenting the move but stressed they were not angry when the ban was announced.
“It’s a shame that it’s all banned for next year but I understand. In fact, we were a resigned, but not furious, contributor to getting it taken away next year because we understand that forcing everyone else to develop a system like that – because it is beneficial – would probably have been self-defeating.
“And we did have the benefit for a season, which made the investment and effort worthwhile.”