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Large wings & amp; Spoiler lips: aerodynamics in sports cars

Wolfgang Groeger-Meier
Large rear wings, blatant spoiler lips
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D en Motorsport conquered the rear wing in 1966 with the Chaparral 2E for the CanAm series. Two years later, the output dispenser also flooded Formula 1. Ferrari first installed a free-standing rear wing on the 312 V12. The others followed immediately, realizing that the wings were better at taming a nervous tail. In 1967 Lotus had already experimented with smaller spoilers on the Type 49. But these were more stubs than free-standing elements.

Extendable rear wings are trendy

To this day, wings are used extensively in motorsport. They also carry street sports cars. Not all, but many. For example the Porsche 911 GT3 with three pizza boxes fit on the rear wing. Or the BMW M4 GTS with its large counter. Who wouldn't want to eat a few fries on it?

The rear wing of the M4 GTS is three-way adjustable. In public road traffic, the air control unit may only be operated in the flattest position. The same applies to the retractable front lip. You have to pull them in before the 500 hp special model can be let loose on the road. Nevertheless: watch out for every curb, otherwise the athlete will scrape his lip. In the road setup, the M4 GTS has two kilos of downforce on the front axle at 200 km /h. At the back it's four kilograms. Spoiler lip and wings do their part.

Hans-Dieter Seufert
Adjustable rear wing of the BMW M4 GTS.

Aesthetics and most designers were wings on street sports cars always suspect. Because they strongly influence the look. Some would say disgrace. Extendable rear wings are now the trend. The Ford GT folds its out at around 145 km /h and angles it when braking from highSpeeds. Then the wing serves as an air brake. We also know the Airbrake from McLaren. Or the Bugatti Chiron. The fold-out spoiler of the sports car takes up a third more space than that of the Veyron, and donates massive amounts of downforce. From a speed of 180, it stands up by 49 degrees when braking, supported as an airbrake, so that a maximum of 2g of deceleration occurs.

Honda Civic Type R with prominent wings

Even compact sports cars have wings . The most prominent example is probably the Honda Civic Type R. Or the Ford Focus RS. Lamborghini has come up with a special trick. The Italians adopt the principle of torque vectoring and transfer it to the rear wing of the Huracán Performante. Air is collected on the tailgate, which is fed into the wing and blown out on the underside. In curves, the Performante opens the tailgate on the outside of the curve, pulls the Lambo into the corners and stabilizes the rear. Lamborghini then calls this effect aero vectoring.

If there is no sculpture adorning the trunk lid, there is still the tuner, which also likes to provocatively enlarge existing elements. Do you already know the Porsche 911 Gemballa Avalanche with a two-story monster counter? You can find the tuned 911 and a large selection of rear wings and spoiler lips in our photo show.


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