Car manufacturers and suppliers unleash their full potential in motorsports and then transfer that technology to production vehicles. There is a particularly complex one, which carries not only the most logical magnitudes, but also controls and key information. We tell you what the steering wheel screen shows an F1 driver.
Considering the dimensions of the car, the display replaces the instrument panel and resembles what we find on high-end motorcycles. When looking from left to right, the top line of the F1 driver’s steering wheel gives the last lap time at the start. Then there are the revolutions per minute (rpm) of the engine and the difference of the most recent turn from the best time.
The second line starts with the speed, in kilometers per hour (km/h). “It is a number that we do not look at, I have to confess,” said the Spanish Pedro de la Rosa, the former Jaguar, Arrows, Sauber and HRT driver. The far right has the braking balance (BBAL, for “break balance”): when the figure is positive, the front end is doing most of the work; if it is negative, the opposite.
The character of the center is undoubtedly the most familiar to untrained eyes. Enlarged, the steering wheel shows the F1 driver the gear engaged. It can go from “1” to “8”, although it can also display an “N” (neutral). On each flank, the display has another fundamental piece of information: the temperature of each tire. The current commentator Movistar Plus He explained that it indicates the degrees Celsius at which the cover is with respect to the “target” temperature.
Always starting from the left, the third line shows the lap number, while the fourth starts with the battery charge percentage (SOC, for “state of charge”). “It is a very technical piece of information, but also very useful,” said the former tester for the Ferrari and McLaren teams. “(It serves) so that you know what can be good, what you can play to defend yourself,” he exemplified.
Following the fourth line, the display gives a countdown in the center with the remaining time of the practice session or classification. At the bottom, across the width of the screen, is a red and green bar, like a cell phone or laptop. “It tells how much energy you have for the lap what you’re doing,” he finished.