Three engines per year rule "no new science" - Mercedes

Formula 1's move to three engines for the full season in 2018 will not require any "new science", says Mercedes' engine chief.

Three engines per year rule "no new science" - Mercedes
Valtteri Bottas, Mercedes AMG F1 W08, Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes AMG F1 W08, Sebastian Vettel, Ferrari SF70H, Daniel Ricciardo, Red Bull Racing RB13, Kimi Raikkonen, Ferrari SF70H, Max Verstappen, Red Bull Racing RB13, the rest of the field at the start of the race
Andy Cowell, Managing Director, Mercedes AMG High Performance Powertrains in the Press Conference
Valtteri Bottas, Mercedes-Benz F1 W08 leads at the start of the race as Kevin Magnussen, Haas F1 Team VF-17 runs wide
Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes AMG F1 W08, Sebastian Vettel, Ferrari SF70H, Daniel Ricciardo, Red Bull Racing RB13, Kimi Raikkonen, Ferrari SF70H at the start
Valtteri Bottas, Mercedes-Benz F1 W08
Valtteri Bottas, Mercedes AMG F1 W08, Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes AMG F1 W08, Sebastian Vettel, Ferrari SF70H, Kimi Raikkonen, Ferrari SF70H, Daniel Ricciardo, Red Bull Racing RB13

This year drivers will incur grid penalties as soon as they use more than three internal combustion engines, MGU-Hs or turbochargers, rather than the previous four.

Andy Cowell, head of the High Performance Powertrains arm that produces the engines Mercedes has used to win the last four F1 titles, said teams should not find the latest change taxing as it simply continues the trend begun with 2004's one-engine-per-weekend rule.

"The move to the three engines means that you need to do seven races with each power unit, rather than five," Cowell told Motorsport.com.

"That's a reasonable step forward but for the last 10 years every single engine engineer has had a progressively increasing life requirement from everything that he or she's been working on, and so it's not a new science, it's just a different number.

"We had qualifying engines when they were permitted but we then said no that's ridiculous to have a qualifying engine and then fit a race engine, it's going to be the same spec of engine throughout a race weekend. That was the first time.

"That's the point where you have to balance off qualifying performance and race durability.

"Then we said it was two race weekends and then we said it's eight engines per driver and then we said it's five power units per driver, because KERS was completely free, and it's all done for cost."

The electronic elements of the power unit will be further restricted, with only two MGU-Ks, control electronics and energy stores allowed per driver in the season.

"It's attention to detail on those bits," said Cowell.

"You will see what's been consumed by the drivers this year - the energy store and the control electronics are the lowest numbers out of all the teams. So that's probably their easiest area to extend the life.

"Often with electrical components, as long as you've not got high-temperature components, they will last so long as the mechanical design of the support of all the electronic components is robust.

"So if you've managed the vibration mounting, then those parts will last a long time."

Cowell is certain the 2018 engines will be at least as powerful as last year's versions despite the increasing lifespan.

"It's what the engineers have completely accustomed to managing and our ambition is always to not compromise our qualifying pace, nor our race pace but not have a DNF or need a grid penalty," he added.

"In some areas it's a balance between raw power and life, in other areas it's battle between raw power and mass."

shares
comments
Alonso admits interest in NASCAR test

Previous article

Alonso admits interest in NASCAR test

Next article

Force India, Sauber withdraw EU complaint against F1

Force India, Sauber withdraw EU complaint against F1
Load comments
How Tsunoda plans to achieve his F1 potential Prime

How Tsunoda plans to achieve his F1 potential

Yuki Tsunoda arrived in grand prix racing amid a whirlwind of hype, which only increased after his first race impressed the biggest wigs in Formula 1. His road since has been rocky and crash-filled, and OLEG KARPOV asks why Red Bull maintains faith in a driver who admits he isn’t really that big a fan of F1?

Formula 1
Oct 15, 2021
The danger of reading too much into F1's clickbait radio messages Prime

The danger of reading too much into F1's clickbait radio messages

OPINION: After Lewis Hamilton responded to reports labelling him 'furious' with Mercedes following his heated exchanges over team radio during the Russian Grand Prix, it provided a snapshot on how Formula 1 broadcasting radio snippets can both illuminate and misrepresent the true situation

Formula 1
Oct 14, 2021
How F1’s pole winner approach undermines drivers Prime

How F1’s pole winner approach undermines drivers

OPINION: Valtteri Bottas is credited with pole position for the 2021 Turkish Grand Prix, despite being beaten in qualifying. This is another example of Formula 1 and the FIA scoring an own goal by forgetting what makes motorsport magic, with the Istanbul race winner also a victim of this in the championship’s recent history

Formula 1
Oct 13, 2021
Turkish Grand Prix driver ratings Prime

Turkish Grand Prix driver ratings

On a day that the number two Mercedes enjoyed a rare day in the sun, the Turkish Grand Prix produced several standout drives - not least from a driver who has hit a purple patch of late

Formula 1
Oct 11, 2021
The hidden factors that thwarted Hamilton's bid for Turkey glory Prime

The hidden factors that thwarted Hamilton's bid for Turkey glory

Starting 11th after his engine change grid penalty, Lewis Hamilton faced a tough task to repeat his Turkish Grand Prix heroics of 2020 - despite making strong early progress in the wet. Instead, his Mercedes teammate Valtteri Bottas broke through for a first win of the year to mitigate Max Verstappen re-taking the points lead

Formula 1
Oct 11, 2021
How pitstops evolved into an F1 art form Prime

How pitstops evolved into an F1 art form

A Formula 1 pitstop is a rapid-fire blend of high technology and human performance. PAT SYMONDS describes how the science of margin gains makes stops so quick

Formula 1
Oct 10, 2021
Why Mercedes' Istanbul edge is both stronger and weaker than it seems Prime

Why Mercedes' Istanbul edge is both stronger and weaker than it seems

Mercedes and Lewis Hamilton dominated the opening day of action for the 2021 Turkish Grand Prix, on the Istanbul circuit’s much improved track surface. But the Black Arrows squad’s position isn’t quite what it seems. Here’s why...

Formula 1
Oct 8, 2021
The rise and fall of Lotus as an F1 superpower Prime

The rise and fall of Lotus as an F1 superpower

On 8 October 1961, Innes Ireland claimed victory at the United States Grand Prix to herald the true arrival of a new Formula 1 giant. While Team Lotus endured plenty of highs and lows until the team folded over three decades later, Colin Chapman's squad made F1 history and helped shape the championship.

Formula 1
Oct 8, 2021