Ferrari took ‘systematic’ approach to new F1 power unit design

Ferrari says it took a “systematic” approach to designing its new Formula 1 power unit for the 2021 season after struggling for performance throughout last year.

Ferrari slumped to its worst season in 40 years in 2020 as it struggled with both a draggy SF1000 car and an underperforming power unit, the latter a consequence of a private settlement with the FIA over its 2019 engine.

It limited Ferrari to sixth place in the constructors’ championship and just three podium finishes, while customer teams Alfa Romeo and Haas finished eighth and ninth respectively.

Ferrari has designed an all-new power unit ahead of the 2021 season after the regulations prevented in-season updates last year, allowing it to focus on every single area to make improvements.

“We tried to use a systematic approach calling on all of our departments - planning, simulation, development, the track - looking for any chance to improve,” explained Ferrari’s head of power unit Enrico Gualtieri.

“We identified the things we could work on later, after giving attention to the main ones, without forgetting the impact every choice would have on reliability.

“As a consequence, along with the chassis engineers, we have worked considerably on the layout of the power unit, trying to make the overall project for the car as efficient as possible.”

Read Also:

Gualtieri explained how Ferrari had managed to find a performance gain of over one-tenth of a second per lap in the main engine alone.

“We continuously worked on the internal combustion engine, aiming to increase its thermal efficiency with help also coming from our partner Shell, which has led to an advantage estimated at over one-tenth of a second per lap,” he said.

"The turbo compressor has been revised to meet the needs of the engine, and at the same time we have planned to increased efficiency in the recovery of exhaust fumes.

“We’re also working on the hybrid system, on the electronic part, trying to revise all of its components and optimising them.

“The season we’re about to begin also has a phase of preparation with respect to the new regulations in which the hours of development of the power unit have been reduced even more. These regulations encourage us to be ready ahead of to time and to introduce most of the possible developments right from the first race.

“We have put enormous energy into this project but at the same time we’re working hard on the power unit for 2022. It will debut next year, and it’ll be even more important, because it will be with us for at least three years of races.”

After last year’s power unit proved to be by far the slowest in a straight line, Ferrari F1 chief Mattia Binotto said at last month’s team launch that the initial data suggested this had been resolved for 2021.

“Based on our simulations today, based on what we can see in terms of power output from the dynos, and the drag of the car from the wind tunnel, I think that we recovered quite a lot of speed on the straights,” Binotto said.

“So I'm expecting the speed not to be such an issue as it was. We hope to be competitive, but we will know it only when being in Bahrain, because it's always relative to what the others are doing.

“But we believe that our car is certainly more efficient compared to the one we had last year, and when I'm saying efficient, again, it is both from the aero point of view, and from the power unit point of view.”

shares
comments

Related video

Alpine open to adding partner Formula 1 team

Previous article

Alpine open to adding partner Formula 1 team

Next article

Will F1 drivers continue to take a knee in 2021?

Will F1 drivers continue to take a knee in 2021?
Load comments

About this article

Series Formula 1
Event Ferrari livery unveil
Sub-event Presentation
Teams Ferrari
Author Luke Smith
Why Russell was right to be wrong about Bottas after Imola F1 clash Prime

Why Russell was right to be wrong about Bottas after Imola F1 clash

George Russell and Valtteri Bottas' collision at Imola on Sunday prompted fury in the Formula 1 paddock. But Russell's carefully-worded heartfelt statement later, acknowledging that his initial response was wrong, proved the right move

How Verstappen and Hamilton’s Imola clash sets the tone for 2021 Prime

How Verstappen and Hamilton’s Imola clash sets the tone for 2021

In Max Verstappen's Formula 1 career to date, he has been cast as the 'pretender', an acknowledged top-line performer without the car to regularly challenge Lewis Hamilton. But that no longer applies in 2021, and the start to the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix was the most telling signal yet of what we can expect from their duel this year

Formula 1
Apr 21, 2021
How "overwhelming" McLaren move has given Ricciardo a new verve Prime

How "overwhelming" McLaren move has given Ricciardo a new verve

Daniel Ricciardo has found a new lease of life at McLaren – a move that’s been years in the making, as he explains to STUART CODLING…

Formula 1
Apr 20, 2021
How 2021's midfielders have taken lessons from F1's top teams Prime

How 2021's midfielders have taken lessons from F1's top teams

Formula 1’s latest Imola adventure turned into an expensive trip for many teams due to several crashes throughout the weekend. While balancing the books is an added factor in 2021 with the cost cap, a few midfield teams have cashed in early on development investments.

Formula 1
Apr 19, 2021
Emilia Romagna Grand Prix Driver Ratings Prime

Emilia Romagna Grand Prix Driver Ratings

A frantic wet race at Imola produced plenty of excitement and drama as drivers scrabbled for grip. Amid the hatful of mistakes and incidents that ensued, who kept their noses cleanest?

Formula 1
Apr 19, 2021
How the Emilia Romagna GP result hinged on three crucial saves Prime

How the Emilia Romagna GP result hinged on three crucial saves

Rain before the start of the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix promised to spice up the action, and the race certainly delivered on that. Max Verstappen got the best launch to win from Lewis Hamilton, but both got away with mistakes that could have had serious consequences

Formula 1
Apr 19, 2021
The back-bedroom world-beater that began a new F1 era Prime

The back-bedroom world-beater that began a new F1 era

The first in a line of world beaters was designed in a back bedroom and then constructed in a shed. STUART CODLING recalls the Tyrrell 001

Formula 1
Apr 18, 2021
Why Mercedes isn't confident it's really ahead of Red Bull at Imola Prime

Why Mercedes isn't confident it's really ahead of Red Bull at Imola

While Mercedes struck back against Red Bull by topping the times at Imola on Friday ahead of the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix, the overall picture remains incredibly close. Despite having a possible edge this weekend, the reigning Formula 1 world champion squad is not taking anything for granted...

Formula 1
Apr 16, 2021