F1's minimum car weight has been increased by another 6 kg for 2017, in light of the switch to wider Pirelli tires.
F1's latest technical regulations were published by the FIA a fortnight ago, and mandated that the weight of the car, without fuel, must not be less than 722 kg at all times during a grand prix weekend.
However, a later clause in the rules stated that the limit would be tweaked to take into account the increased bulk of F1's wider 2017 rubber.
Article 4.3 states "The weight limits...will be adjusted up or down according to any differences (rounded up to the nearest 1kg) between the total set and individual axle set weights respectively of the 2016 and 2017 dry-weather tires."
Motorsport.com has learned that the official weight difference between the 2016 and 2017 tires has been put at 6kg, so the minimum weight of F1 cars for the season ahead will be 728kg.
It is understood that the front tires weigh a little more than 1kg more each (so 2kg+ in total) and the rear tires are just more than 1.5kg more each (so 3kg+ in total).
With the value being rounded up to the nearest kilogramme as the regulations demand, the final value to be added to the 722kg will be 6kg.
The 728kg limit for 2017 is a significant leap over last year's weight limit, which was 702kg.
Much of the extra bulk is because of the wider cars – with F1's 2017 challengers being 20cm wider than last year so there is more bodywork. Furthermore, an increase in the fuel limit to 105kg will mean bigger tanks.
Despite the weight handicap – with 10kg extra costing 0.3 seconds per laps, so a loss of nearly one second in title – the extra downforce and mechanical grip coming is expected to produce cars that are five seconds per lap quicker than they were in 2015.