Domenicali: F1 can prove hybrids have a great future

Formula 1 CEO and president Stefano Domenicali is confident the series can prove electrification is not the only sustainable future automotive power solution, believing hybrids have “a great future”.

Domenicali: F1 can prove hybrids have a great future

F1 has raced with V6 hybrid power units since the start of the 2014 season, moving away from naturally-aspirated V8 engines in a bid to make itself more road relevant for manufacturers.

Although the hybrid route has widely been regarded as the right one for F1, the high cost and complexity of the current power units has been a constant source of criticism.

The next generation of power units is currently planned for 2026, but looks set to be brought forward to 2025 when a simpler, cheaper design is expected to be taken.

But amid F1’s heightened focus on sustainability and its environmental impact, new chief Domenicali felt the platform could be a great showcase for hybrid technology, showing manufacturers there are alternatives to electrification.

“Sustainability can be seen on a CO2 dimension, or [with] a lot of other things related to it, but let’s focus on the emissions or technology,” Domenicali said in an interview with Sky Sports F1.

“I think Formula 1 has a great future to showcase that there is not only electrification in the automotive world. I think that hybridisation is a great path, and will have a great future.

“Formula 1 has to use this to make sure the OEMs will invest, in order to show that there is this way of being sustainable in a different way.

“That is something that I want to focus the attention of the teams and the OEMs on for the future, with a big attention on cost.

“The mistake that was done in the past was related to putting only technology at the head of the priority and not the cost.”

Read Also:

F1 currently has four manufacturers producing power units - Mercedes, Ferrari, Honda and Renault - but is set to lose Honda at the end of this year after the Japanese marque announced its plan to quit a few months ago.

Domenicali said that while the technology and efficiency of the F1 power unit was already highly attractive, the series had to ensure its future solutions still offered road relevance.

“We have to make sure the hybrid technology that will be used has relevance for the road cars, but will also start from a very different investment and cost base,” Domenicali said.

“It’s not possible that a power unit in Formula 1 can cost what it’s costing today. I think there is a big margin on that.

“One of the big objectives we have is that we’d like to involve teams and OEMs to try to anticipate the new engine even earlier than what is expected in the new regulations, and make sure that these kinds of things will be part of the agenda.

“I’m sure we can do it.”

shares
comments

Related video

Why Renault's survivor wasn't part of Alpine's plans

Previous article

Why Renault's survivor wasn't part of Alpine's plans

Next article

McLaren fires up new Mercedes engine for 2021 F1 car

McLaren fires up new Mercedes engine for 2021 F1 car
Load comments

About this article

Series Formula 1
Author Luke Smith
What needs to “change” for Red Bull is ending Verstappen’s errors Prime

What needs to “change” for Red Bull is ending Verstappen’s errors

OPINION: Going up against the dominant force of Mercedes and Lewis Hamilton was always going to demand the best from Red Bull and Max Verstappen. But after making a couple more errors during the Portuguese Grand Prix, the Dutch driver showed there's a small gap he still needs to close in the 2021 Formula 1 title fight.

The "subtle" Red Bull upgrades that kept it in the Portugal F1 mix Prime

The "subtle" Red Bull upgrades that kept it in the Portugal F1 mix

Red Bull's Portuguese Grand Prix fortunes were decidedly second best to Mercedes', but the result skews the potential that the team had at Portimao. With a new set of updates, the team looks good going forward into the rest of 2021's spicy F1 competition

Formula 1
May 3, 2021
Portuguese Grand Prix driver ratings Prime

Portuguese Grand Prix driver ratings

The 2021 Portuguese GP will for several drivers go down as a weekend of missed opportunities amid imperfect track conditions that caused struggles with tyre warm-up. But the performances of a select few stood out from the crowd

Formula 1
May 3, 2021
The five key tests Hamilton passed to claim Portugal victory Prime

The five key tests Hamilton passed to claim Portugal victory

Just as he did in 2020, Lewis Hamilton had to come from behind to win the 2021 Portuguese Grand Prix. Only this time there were two rivals he had to pass, among the several challenges he had to overcome, on his way to securing a 97th grand prix victory

Formula 1
May 3, 2021
Imola 1994: Memories from Ayrton Senna’s F1 rivals Prime

Imola 1994: Memories from Ayrton Senna’s F1 rivals

The tragic events of the 1994 San Marino Grand Prix changed Formula 1 forever. Here, 17 of the drivers who took part explain how they coped with the devastating deaths of Roland Ratzenberger and Ayrton Senna.

Formula 1
May 1, 2021
The data that leaves both Red Bull, Mercedes uncertain of supremacy Prime

The data that leaves both Red Bull, Mercedes uncertain of supremacy

Lewis Hamilton topped the crucial FP2 session on Friday as F1 returned to Portugal, but his Mercedes team cannot be sure it has the edge on its Red Bull rivals. As cool temperatures and wind combine with the still-slippery surface to present drivers with quandaries over set-up and tyre warmup, there's still everything to play for come qualifying.

Formula 1
May 1, 2021
How in-form Norris is staking his claim as Britain's next F1 champion Prime

How in-form Norris is staking his claim as Britain's next F1 champion

As a highly-rated Mercedes junior, George Russell is naturally billed as Lewis Hamilton's heir apparent where Britain's next Formula 1 champion is concerned. But he may face competition for that accolade from Lando Norris, fresh from a confidence-boosting run to third at Imola whose rise is being accelerated by his McLaren team’s revival

Formula 1
Apr 29, 2021
The biggest headache F1 faces over its sprint race experiments Prime

The biggest headache F1 faces over its sprint race experiments

The news this week that F1 has green-lit 'sprint qualifying' races that will determine the grid for three grands prix in 2021 was met with a blend of excitement and scepticism. But before those in both camps can be vilified, F1 must first work out what its criteria is for success - and what will justify making them a more permanent fixture

Formula 1
Apr 28, 2021