How ERS Works in F1 Manager 2023: Complete ERS Guide

ERS strategies are possibly one of the trickiest parts of F1 Manager 2023 to understand and manage throughout a race. This guide runs through exactly how ERS works and some top tips to efficiently manage it.

F1 Manager 23 ERS Guide

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F1 Manager 23 has made some changes to ERS in this year’s game. While the main principle of how ERS works is the same, there have been some adjustments made to the level of control you have.

In this guide, I’m going to run through exactly how ERS works in F1 Manager 23, as it is certainly one of the more confusing parts of the game.

Incorrectly using ERS can leave you at a huge disadvantage in a race. So I’m going to touch on some important tips to really utilise your ERS to its fullest giving you a big advantage during races.

How does ERS work in F1 Manager 23

The ERS in F1 Manager 2023 tries to replicate the real world system as much as possible. ERS or energy recovery system is the name given to the part of the powertrain which generates extra electrical power to compliment the power coming from your engine.

A driver can choose to use this energy in different ways to give themselves a boost in power. This can help with putting in fast laps, overtaking and even defending.

You’ll see on the ERS strategy screen a graphic of your battery and how full it is, along with a few different strategies to choose from.

I’m going to start by explaining how to read the very top graphic, the deployment, harvesting and the overall state of the battery. It’s important to keep an eye on this during the race.

If you fully deplete your battery, you’ll suddenly be unable to use the extra power and can be vulnerable to cars behind.

F1 Manager 23 ERS Modes
ERS deploy vs harvest explained

So the ERS battery has a capacity of 4MJ. A driver can choose to deploy this across a lap, and if they want they can use all 4MJ each lap. This is shown on the top left of the strategy screen. You can see how much energy your driver has used out of the maximum of 4MJ here.

On the right of this graphic, you’ll see the harvest amount. A driver can harvest a maximum of just 2MJ each lap. And again, you can see how much energy has been harvested here.

Now is where things get a little bit confusing because, under this graphic, you’ll see the different strategies. And you can see that the fastest deployment mode will result in a net loss of -2MJ.

So why, if a driver can use all 4MJ of energy are we only losing 2MJ each lap? This is because a driver will continue to harvest throughout a lap while deploying their ERS.

Every lap, a driver will harvest 2MJ or close to it. This happens automatically during the braking phases around a lap. This means that on full deploy mode, a driver will use 4MJ of energy, and they’ll also harvest 2MJ of energy. This results in that net loss of -2MJ that is shown next to the deploy strategy.

Now with that in our minds, the strategy commands all of a sudden become a little clearer. A driver always harvests 2MJ of energy every lap. But the amount of energy they deploy differs between the different strategies.

StrategyEnergy deployedEnergy harvestedNet gain/loss
Deploy4MJ2MJ-2MJ
Neutral2MJ2MJ0
Top-Up1.8MJ2MJ+0.2MJ
Harvest1MJ2MJ+1MJ

This shows that the car will always harvest the full 2MJ each lap, even in the fastest deploy mode. And when your driver is harvesting, they will still deploy some energy.

While F1 Manager 23 doesn’t show you all of these exact calculations, knowing how each strategy deploys and harvests really helps understand how ERS really works.

At the end of each lap, the deployment and harvest limitations are reset, so a driver can start to replenish their battery once again into the first corner.


When to use each ERS Strategy

So now we’ve looked at how each ERS strategy works in F1 Manager 2023, when should you actually use each different mode? And what happens if you run out of energy?

So before I touch on that last question I first want to run through the best times to use each different ERS strategy. If you can’t wait though and need to know the answer to how to best recover your depleted battery, check out the description. I have timestamps there so you can jump forward.

F1 Manager 23 ERS screen

But back to the strategy modes. You only have 4 strategy modes in this year’s F1 Manager compared to 5 last year. In last year’s game, there were separate overtake and defend modes.

These were basically the same, so in this year’s game, they’ve been removed. Instead, we have an extra ERS battle assist option.


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The 4 ERS strategies this time around are;

  • Deploy – Gives you the fastest lap times, but burns the most energy
  • Neutral – Deploys and harvests the same amount of ERS keeping the battery level
  • Top-up – This new mode recovers a small bit of ERS each lap by harvesting more than is deployed
  • Harvest – This slows the driver down in order to recover the most energy
Deploy mode

Generally, you will want to use the deploy mode when trying to put in fast lap times. This can be before or after a pit stop to try and jump cars around you, or to close or open up a gap to cars around you.

When attacking or defending from other cars, you’ll want to use the deploy mode along with the new ERS battle assist mode. This new button will tell your driver to use the ERS strategically in places which are most likely to be an overtaking or defending spot.

This is typically on long straights. Enabling ERS battle assist won’t result in the fastest lap times, so remember to turn it off when driving in clean air. It does work well to give your driver the best chance of a successful overtake or defensive move.

Neutral mode

The neutral ERS strategy is the one you’re most likely to use often during a race. This will spend and harvest roughly the same amount of ERS each lap, keeping the battery in a neutral state.

Top-up mode

The new top-up mode is very similar to neutral but focuses on recovering a little bit of ERS each lap. This is ideal if you have cars around you and need to top up your battery, but you don’t want to enter the full harvest mode and lose too much lap time.

Harvest mode

The final ERS strategy is harvest. This focuses on recovering as much energy as possible. This mode is the slowest ERS strategy meaning you need to be aware of cars around you.

If there is a car right behind you, you’ll become very easy to overtake if you enable the harvest strategy. So be wary when you use it.


How to get out of an ERS hole

So one of the biggest issues with ERS in F1 Manager 2023, is running out of energy. This can happen incredibly easily just by running the deploy ERS strategy for a couple of laps.

With the ability to accelerate the race up to 16x, you can easily forget to take a driver out of deploy mode. And in as little as 10 or so seconds they’ve completed two laps and they’re out of battery.

This is something I’ve done on so many occasions. So when this does happen, you need to know how to efficiently get out of the ERS hole and how to recover your battery without being too at risk from drivers behind you.

F1 Manager 23 ERS depleted
Utilising harvest mode to recover battery

Now, using the harvest strategy is the quickest way to fully recover your battery. This will harvest 2MJ of energy each lap while your driver will deploy 1MJ. So from this, a full lap using the harvest mode will recover you 1MJ.

That means to take a battery from empty to full will require 4 full laps using the harvest ERS mode. While this is the quickest way to fully recover your battery, you’re driver will be slow for those 4 laps and can easily be overtaken or lose a lot of time.

If you do completely run out of battery though, you will almost certainly need to set your driver to harvest for at least an entire lap.

You can manually control when your driver harvests. And this can help you tell your driver to harvest during the twisty sections of the track. Then just before you approach a straight or overtaking spot. You can set your driver’s strategy to neutral.

This will allow them to use a little more ERS to help them defend themselves from a driver behind. But the downside of this is that your driver won’t recover 1MJ of energy per lap. Depending on how long you set them to the neutral strategy, they could only recover 0.5MJ or less.

My best advice would be to try to harvest for a full lap if you can. Do this if you aren’t facing too much pressure from behind. Then you can change the strategy to top-up.

Top-up is the new ERS strategy which allows your driver to recover 2MJ and only deploy 1.8MJ. This will slowly over time increase the energy in the battery. While it will only recover energy slowly, the upside is that you won’t be as slow as if you were on full harvest mode.

If you do have a car behind you and you have no ERS left. I’d recommend doing what I just mentioned. Set your driver to harvest during the parts of the track where you are unlikely to be overtaken. Then change the deployment mode to neutral to try and defend from the car behind.


How to use ERS battle assist

If you are defending from a driver behind, or if you’re attacking a car ahead, you should look to use the ERS battle assist. This will tell your driver to strategically use their ERS in areas where they are likely to complete an overtake, or to help them defend from cars behind.

F1 Manager 23 ERS Battle Assist

Enabling this mode simply tells your driver how to use ERS. They will still deploy and harvest the same amount depending on which strategy you have selected. The driver will simply use the ERS in specific parts of the lap.

This can even be used when you are in an ERS hole. If you run out of energy and have to go into harvest or top-up mode. You can still enable the ERS battle assist.

Again, this will simply instruct your driver to deploy their energy at strategic places around the lap. They will still only use the 1.8MJ of deployment if in the top-up mode for example.

If you are not battling with any other cars, make sure you disable the battle assist. Keeping it on will still tell the driver to use ERS strategically. But when it’s turned off, your driver will go back to using ERS at the most efficient parts of the lap to put in the fastest lap times.


Using ERS at the start of a race

One area where you will want to always run in the deploy ERS mode in F1 Manager 23, is at the start of a race. This will give your driver the fastest start and opening lap and will maximise their chance at gaining positions on lap 1.

As the race starts, you don’t have control over your strategy until the cars pull away. So I’d highly recommend in the strategy screen just before a race changing your driver’s ERS mode to deploy and their fuel mode as well.

Then after the first few turns, or after lap 1 has settled down, you can reduce the ERS and fuel modes back down to a neutral state.

F1 Manager 23 Race Start

When to maximise your harvesting

The final thing I do want to touch on quickly is the ideal time to actually harvest your battery during a race. And this is during a safety car or VSC. During these periods, all cars will be driving at a slower pace, so there is no need to push your car, your tyres or your deployment modes.

As soon as a safety car comes out, reduce your ERS mode to harvest, and also reduce your fuel pace command as well. A safety car always gives you a few laps to recover your ERS, giving you a full battery ready for the race restart.


Conclusion

And with that last tip down, it rounds out my F1 Manager 2023 ERS guide. Hopefully after reading this, ERS and how it works has become a bit easier to understand.

Knowing how each deployment mode actually deploys and harvests are the most important thing to take away from this. As this hidden information can help to inform your own decisions on strategy.


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Article written by Mjolnir

Co-Founder of SimRacingSetups.com

Mjolnir is one of the main setup creators and content writers for SimRacingSetups. He has had years of experience in sim racing, both competitively and casually. After a decade of sim racing experience, he co-founded SimRacingSetup.com to share his passion and knowledge of sim racing and Formula 1 with other sim racers.

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