Formula One will stick with its existing Pirelli tyres next year after its 10 teams unanimously voted against the introduction of new compounds and constructions that were prepared for the 2020 season.
The 2020 prototype tyres were debuted during practice ahead of the U.S. Grand Prix in November before being rolled out for two days of testing after the season-ending Abu Dhabi Grand Prix. Pirelli, F1's sole tyre supplier, had hoped the new tyre would reduce tyre degradation and provide a wider working range of temperature -- allowing drivers to push harder in races.
However, driver feedback on the new compound was largely negative.
After sampling the new tyres in Abu Dhabi, Haas driver Romain Grosjean was asked which he would prefer to race in 2020.
To that he said: "I don't know. It's too early to say. But it shouldn't really be a question, should it?
"That's where we are. If you ask me right now, I don't know. Depending on the track I would tell you one or the other... this is not going to happen.
"After one year of development, you would like to be saying 'I am going to race the 2020, no question'."
On Tuesday teams rejected the proposed switch, meaning F1 will stick with the same compounds and construction used for the 2019 season. One of the biggest complaints from drivers was that the 2020 tyre was slower, with one suggesting it was in the region of one second per lap in Abu Dhabi.
Pirelli's motorsport director, Mario Isola, admitted peak grip was down on the 2019 tyres, but said that was to lessen the drop off in performance over the tyre's life.
"The target was to make a tyre better for racing, not qualifying, we were not focusing on qualifying, we were not focused or peak of grip, the absolute performance of the car,"he said. "The idea was to have tyres where you can push more, this means that probably we have more one-stop races and so on but that was the discussion and agreement we have.
"Yes, you can also increase the level of grip, bit if you move the peak of grip, then for sure you feel more degradation because the degradation is the difference between the peak of grip and then you stabilise. So to have a tyre where they feel less degradation you should have a warm up phase, and then you stabilise at close to the peak of grip and then this curve should stay consistent and not dropping down.
"But if you have a big peak of grip then maybe for 2-3 laps [like with the 2019 tyres] you go down and then you stabilise. The feeling is that of degradation and that was not what we were looking for."
F1 has one more season on the current tyres before switching to 18-inch rims for the 2021 season, which will feature a complete overhaul of the series' cars and rules.
The 18-inch tyres were also tested in Abu Dhabi by Mercedes, as part of an extensive testing programme involving several teams supplying mule cars. In the interest of fairness, Pirelli controls all elements of the tests and shares every bit of data with every team.
Tuesday's vote is likely to increase the pressure on Pirelli's 2021 project.