I have used ackermann plenty of times over the years, and have found it can serve the following purposes:
A) Can help add/reduce grip, with an emphasis on front-end grip, in situations where the track conditions deviate significantly from “baseline”. Example: during early-season test days where the track may have very little grip, I will generally run one position down from standard on the steering column (towards the blue circle on the image below).
B) Can help to aid in driver comfort by reducing the weight of the steering. Generally a good tool for when the grip levels are high, and/or the driver’s arm strength may be an issue. Example: in situations where grip levels are high, and the steering is becoming quite heavy, I may run one position up (towards the red circle on the image below).
Ackermann be adjusted in a number of ways:
- Adjusting up or down on the steering column, as referenced earlier.
- Adjusting the tie rod mounting point on the spindles (pictured below).
- Changing steering columns to a model that has mounting points either closer together, or farther apart.
I find that generally I leave the spindle mounting points on the outside holes if multiple points are available (not always the case). If I make a change it will usually be the first option that I referenced, adjusting up or down on the steering shaft, though this is something that I would say I do occasionally at most. Even less frequently will I elect to use option #3, though I have done it in recent years.
I’d say most of the time you’re likely to have or find your baseline and stick to that, prioritizing other front-end changes to adjust handling characteristics of the chassis.