Formula One chooses V6 for 2014
The FIA is set to delay the introduction of a revised engine formula until 2014 after a meeting of the Formula One commission in London overnight.
Originally due to come in to force in 2013, the engine regulations will be put on hold for a year, with the formula itself changing from 1.6 litre turbocharged four cylinder engines to same-capacity and aspirated V6s.
‘We have had fruitful discussions with all the stakeholders following the last World Motor Sport Council meeting in Barcelona,’ said a spokesperson for the FIA.
‘We are very happy with the solution.’
The new solution is set to keep in line with FIA president Jean Todt’s vision of sustainability, with the formula still aiming to be as much as 35% more efficient than the current set-up.
- 1.6-litre, turbocharged V6 engines
- 12,000rpm limit
- Overall power: 550kW
- Engine power: 430kW
- KERS power: 120kW
- ‘Compound’ turbocharging to be introduced in later years
However, regulations have been drawn up to ensure that the overall power of the units remain roughly consistent with current designs. The V6 engines will be limited to 12,000 revs per minute to produce around 550 kilowatts – with 430 kilowatts to come from the engine.
The revision also includes the same allowances for a more powerful energy recovery unit, which will supply the remaining 120kW.
The original proposals to change Formula One’s current engine formula – 2.4 litre, naturally-aspirated V8s – was met with a mixed response.
The majority of engine suppliers have become increasingly uneasy over the changes. Ferrari has been particularly outspoken, saying that the alterations had no relevance to its sports car works.
While Mercedes and Cosworth have been similarly opposed, Renault broke consensus by threatening to leave the sport if the proposed regulations were scrapped.
Through the commission meeting, however, compromise was reached, satisfying each of the manufacturers.
Feedback from key figures of the sport had also become increasingly negative, particularly from Bernie Ecclestone.
‘I’m anti, anti, anti, anti moving into this small turbo four formula,’ he told the AAP earlier this year.
‘It is basically PR – it’s nothing in the world to do with Formula One. These changes are going to be terribly costly to the sport.’
Concerns were raised in particular about the effect the four-cylinder engines would have on the sound of the cars – a key promotional drawcard for the sport.
‘People who have never been to a Formula 1 race, when they leave you ask them what [they liked] they say “the noise”,’ said Ecclestone.
‘People love and get excited about the noise.’