It may not look pretty, but Formula One thinks the ‘halo’ can protect drivers

Formula One halo
To increase driver head protection, the organizers of Formula One are about to make a major change to the look of F1 race cars.

The Federation Internationale de L’Automobile (FIA) has considered two devices to help protect drivers from flying debris in open F1 cars: the “halo” and the “shield.” After testing both, the organization confirmed that the halo will become mandatory beginning next year, according to an FIA statement. The final decision comes just after a test of the cockpit “shield” produced less-than-stellar results.

The halo is a round hoop that surrounds the cockpit, supported by a strut. It’s not the most aesthetically pleasing solution, which may be why the FIA proposed the shield as an alternative. Basically a windshield grafted onto the front of the car, it was tested by Ferrari driver Sebastian Vettel at last week’s British Grand Prix.

But while the shield looks nicer than the halo, Vettel complained of dizziness apparently related to the curved transparent surface of the shield, according to Racer. That proved the undoing of the shield concept, paving the way for the FIA to mandate the halo for 2018. The organization had always planned on introducing some form of extra cockpit protection next year, but hadn’t decided on which concept to use.

The halo/shield tests have proven controversial in F1 paddocks. Driver safety is a major concern, but some within the sport have questioned whether partially enclosing the cockpit will dilute the character of F1, which has always been defined by open-topped, single-seat race cars. There is also concern that a halo or shield might make it more difficult for drivers to get out of their cars in an emergency.

“With support from the teams, certain features of its design will be enhanced,” the FIA said of the halo. Prior to its 2018 introduction, teams may be able to work with the FIA to make the halo a more effective safety device, although its appearance probably won’t change dramatically. That will be tough for F1 teams and fans to swallow, but if the halo can keep drivers safe, it will be worth it.


Pininfarina Battista is a 1,900-horsepower, 250-mph electric supercar

The Pininfarina Battista will be the first production car from famed Italian design firm Pininfarina. Named after company founder Battista Pininfarina, it has a claimed 1,900 horsepower and a $2.5 million price tag.

5G’s arrival is transforming tech. Here’s everything you need to know to keep up

It has been years in the making, but 5G is finally becoming a reality. While 5G coverage is still extremely limited, expect to see it expand in 2019. Not sure what 5G even is? Here's everything you need to know.
Smart Home

Ring Alarm vs. Nest Secure: Which one is right for you?

Thanks to the advance of technology, it's become really easy nowadays to secure your home and protect it from thieves, intruders, and unwanted guests. Which one of these two top contenders is right for you?
Smart Home

Porch pirate problems? Keep them away with these tips and tricks

The holiday season is fast approaching and the packages are arriving on our doorsteps. Are you worried about porch pirates stealing your gifts this holiday season? Here are some tips to help protect your purchases.

These are the 5 best free antivirus apps to protect your MacBook

Malware protection is more important than ever, even if you eschew Windows in favor of Apple's desktop platform. Thankfully, protecting your machine is as easy as choosing from the best free antivirus apps for Mac suites.

Tesla could show the electric pickup Elon Musk is dying to build in 2019

Tesla has started designing its long-promised pickup truck. The yet-unnamed model will come with dual-motor all-wheel drive and lots of torque, plus it will be able to park itself.
Cars is helping Hyundai mine the artificial intelligence gold rush

In November 2018, Hyundai invested in a startup named We talked to the company's founder to learn more about what that means for consumers in the not-too-distant futures.
Emerging Tech

With this robotic garage, retrieving your car is like using a vending machine

Remembering where we parked our cars can be a real pain. But what if our cars came to find us, rather than the other way around? A new automated robot parking valet system aims to help.

Thinking of opting for a car with a diesel engine? Here's what you need to know

Modern diesel-powered models prove that it is possible to build a clean, efficient diesel engine without sacrificing performance. Here's what you need to know about diesel cars, and how they differ from gasoline-powered models.

Best Products of 2018

Our reception desk has so many brown boxes stacked up, it looks like a loading dock. We’re on a first-name basis with the UPS guy. We get new dishwashers more frequently than most people get new shoes. What we’re trying to say is: We…

These winter-warrior cars will never leave you out in the cold

Snow can be an absolute pain if your vehicle isn't optimized to handle that sort of terrain. If brutal snowstorms are an annual part of your life, we recommend you pick up one of these winter-ready vehicles.

2020 Toyota Supra caught hiding in a trailer without a shred of camouflage

Toyota's plan to once again lure enthusiasts into showrooms involves bringing back the Supra, one of its most emblematic nameplates. Here's what we know so far about the upcoming coupe, which Toyota is developing jointly with BMW.

NYC mandates minimum wage for Uber, Lyft, other app-based rideshare drivers

New York City's Taxi and Limousine Commission approved a rule that drivers for companies such as Uber and Lyft must be paid at least minimum wage, even though they are independent contractors. The new pay rate includes operating costs.

LM Industries’ autonomous shuttles head to Phoenix, Sacramento campuses

LM Industries will deploy Olli low-speed autonomous shuttles at school campuses in Arizona and California as part of its ongoing "fleet challenge," which asks local groups to propose uses for autonomous vehicles.