Lotus works on improvements for exhausts
1 November 2012 – Happy with the latest progress for its coandă exhaust solution, Lotus is now aiming to improve the component for low-grip corners. Directing air upwards, the design takes advantage of the coandă effect: airflow’s natural tendency to curve towards the ground.
As the air curves downwards, its first contact patch is the rear diffuser of the car which thus generates extra downforce. Although the E20s of Kimi Räikkönen and Romain Grosjean lose some straight-line speed, as the previous exhausts had helped to maximise power, the latest version does reduce lap times overall.
“The coandă exhaust is now much better understood,” Grosjean explains. “We have to do some work to try to get better results in low grip conditions, especially in qualifying - which is somewhere that I think we can improve - and then in the race the car is just very, very good as usual. So we will continue working on it and try to get some good results in Abu Dhabi.
“Mainly I would like to start the weekend better than in India, where FP1, FP2 and FP3 were not good for me. I didn’t get the right feeling with the car immediately and it set us back for the whole weekend. I think we need to put that in order for Abu Dhabi. Our aim will be to try to start well, work hard and go into qualifying with more knowledge.”
Grosjean, who lost ground when he was banned from starting in Italy, is now only three points behind Nico Rosberg for seventh place in the Drivers’ Championship.