Loughborough University
SAECST.pdf (64.32 kB)

Measurement of formula one car drag forces on the test track

Download (64.32 kB)
journal contribution
posted on 2014-10-06, 12:51 authored by Clive M. Crewe, Martin Passmore, P. Symonds
Coastdown testing is a proven method for determining the drag coefficients for road cars whilst the vehicle is in its normal operating environment. An accurate method of achieving this has been successfully developed at Loughborough University. This paper describes the adaptation and application of these techniques to the special case of a contemporary Formula One racing car. The work was undertaken in conjunction with the Benetton Formula One racing team. The paper outlines the development and application of a suitable mathematical model for this particular type of vehicle. The model includes the aerodynamic, tyre, drivetrain and the un-driven wheel drags and accounts for the change in aerodynamic drag due to ambient wind and changes in vehicle ride height during the coastdown. The test and analysis methods are described. The results from a series of coastdown tests conducted at a current Grand Prix circuit are presented and compared to the results from tyre rig and wind tunnel measurements. © Copyright 1996 Society of Automotive Engineers, Inc.



  • Aeronautical, Automotive, Chemical and Materials Engineering


  • Aeronautical and Automotive Engineering

Published in

SAE Technical Papers


CREWE, C.M., PASSMORE, M.A. and SYMONDS, P., 1996.Measurement of formula one car drag forces on the test track. SAE Technical Paper, 962517.


© Society of Automotive Engineers, Inc.


  • AM (Accepted Manuscript)

Publisher statement

This work is made available according to the conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0) licence. Full details of this licence are available at: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/

Publication date



Copyright © 1998 Society of Automotive Engineers, Inc. This paper is posted on this site with permission from SAE, and is for viewing only. Further use or distribution of this paper is not permitted without permission from SAE.


  • en

Usage metrics

    Loughborough Publications