Ever since the DAS system was introduced during pre-season testing, the media and other teams have been speculating about how much of an advantage it will bring to Mercedes.
The Dual Axis Steering system allows drivers to change the toe angle of the car by pulling and pushing on the steering wheel. It is believed the system helps reduce tyre wear and increases grip by heating the tyres more evenly on the straights, also allowing maximum stability on corner entry.
As innovative as the system is, Toto Wolff says Mercedes doesn’t expect it to be a “game changer”.
“I think in F1 people are always interested in technical innovation and describing what seems to be a silver bullet, that could potentially be a game changer,” explained Wolff.
“The last time I saw such a thing was the double diffuser, but since then it’s more about the marginal gains, adding performance parts, and in a similar way DAS is a great innovation.
“It adds a new dimension to the steering, and will hopefully over its development period add some performance. But today you wouldn’t be able to say this has changed the game for us.
“I don’t want to go into the specifics. It’s great innovation, the idea behind it is fantastic, and I love that fact if it us or another team that comes up with new ideas.”
Wolff went on to say he was pleased that Red Bull chose to seek clarification form the FIA on the legality of the system at the Austrian Grand Prix on Friday, and not on Sunday after the race.
“The system is so innovative that is fair enough that clarification is being sought. I must say it was fair play from Red Bull to seek that clarification by a protest on Friday and not on Sunday night.
“I think it would have been detrimental for F1 to go back to the first race, have a result on track, then a protest, and it wouldn’t be clear who has won.
“I like the sportsmanship of the decision. And it’s absolutely OK to protest, I think we would have done it the other way around too.”
However the FIA declared the system to be legal under 2020 rules.
“I’m happy that the FIA has been very consistent with their verdict.
“We’ve obviously had a lot of conversations with them, we didn’t want to run something that they would deem to be over the line, and therefore the outcome reflects the changes and opinions that we’ve had with the FIA over the last few months,” concluded Wolff.