Investigation into the Aerodynamic Performance of a Concept Sports Car

Mike Dickison, Mohammad Ghaleeh, Soliman Milady, Lit Tan Wen, Mansour Al Qubeissi

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticlepeer-review


Transport aerodynamic optimisation has become an increasingly important field of study in response to emerging factors, such as new human needs and market demands. This paper provides a concept in-house built sports-car aerodynamic and shape optimisation. Wind tunnel tests and numerical simulations have been set-up and conducted to understand the concept vehicle aerodynamic structure and needs for performance improvement. A computer-aided design model has been developed and implemented into the computational fluid dynamics (CFD) software of StarCCM+ for detailed analysis. A 1/4th full-scale fibreglass model has been manufactured for validation. The combined experimental and CFD analyses show that the original aesthetic design exhibits high rear-end lift-force. Modifications have been assessed to improve the drag and lift forces for the front, middle and rear regions. Several geometrical changes are introduced, including new rear-wing design. Also, the front end, roof profile and various ducting modifications have been considered. The introduced design changes lead to optimised downforce of -560.18 N with negligible increase to the accumulated drag effects with C_D≤0.3.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)583-601
Number of pages19
JournalJournal of Applied Fluid Mechanics
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Mar 2020


  • Aerodynamics
  • CFD modelling
  • Drag-force; Downforce
  • Light-weighting


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