Max Verstappen, one of the brightest prospects on the grid right now, remarked how shocked he was when he came across a video of racing from the 2016 season.
He talked about how the cars have now become too wide, which leaves less space on the track to overtake.
“The cars are just too wide now, as a result, you can’t drive a lot of other lines when you’re behind someone else,” said Max Verstappen.
“Widening the cars has not been good for the racing aspect. For the pure driving feeling, we now have a lot more grip. What’s more important? For me as a driver, how it feels, but for the fans of course the racing aspect.”
Max Verstappen shared how he came across a video from racing in 2016 and found it hard to connect with the way racing is today.
“You can’t connect at all and you don’t have balance in the car anymore. I recently came across a video from 2016 on YouTube,” he revealed.
“Then I was surprised at how much racing was going on that year. I couldn’t remember that at all. Then the cars were also a lot narrower."
“If it’s difficult to overtake, you know you’re a bit stuck during some races. Then you have to try it another way. Strategic, then. Trying to catch up with someone with a well-sophisticated pit stop."
“In 2016 you could really catch up with someone on the track. Sometimes you can now, but it has become a lot more difficult.”
The cars in 2006 and 2007 were the best: Max Verstappen
When questioned about what era was his favorite, Max Verstappen pointed to the time from 2004 to 2008 when the cars were much narrower and lighter.
“I really liked the cars from 2004 to 2008. My favorites are those of the years 2006 and 2007,” said Max Verstappen.
“No team in particular, but overall those cars looked really good. They were a lot smaller, narrower, and lighter than they are now. That helps enormously because there was a lot more action on the track.”
One of the factors behind making the cars wider was to accommodate the bigger V6 Turbo power units and to improve the aerodynamic efficiency, hence making the cars faster.
It's not a surprise, though, that many drivers point to cars from 2004-2008. Those cars certainly stand out because they were some of the fastest and most aesthetically appealing cars in the history of Formula 1.