Formula One chief warns about development costs of 2014 engines

Article by Anita Panait, on May 26, 2013

Formula One chief executive Bernie Ecclestone warned Thursday that any failure on the development of new engines in the premier racing sports would result to huge costs, Reuters reports. The Formula One supremo has been opposing the new 1.6 liter turbocharged V6 engine that will replace the current 2.4 liter V8 unit as part of a major rules revamp. Engine manufacturers Ferrari, Mercedes and Renault have all dedicated large amount of money to developing the new V6 units that will come with energy recovery systems and greater fuel efficiency.

The new 1.6 liter turbocharged V6 engine will also cost Formula One teams significantly more than at present. Ecclestone told Reuters at the Monaco Grand Prix that if any of Ferrari, Mercedes and Renault “got it wrong,” it will cost a “fortune to catch up.” He noted that at the moment, everything is still fine as there is very little anyone can do now. He added that the danger is that all three engine maker “think they've got the right engine,” adding once “reality sets in,” it would be too late.

Ecclestone is scheduled to meet with Renault chief executive Carlos Ghosn at the 2013 Formula One showcase race this week, and the two top honchos are likely to include the cost of the engines in their discussions. Renault supplies engine to four teams, including champion Red Bull. That number may rise to five next season if Toro Rosso decides to switch from Ferrari.

Mercedes and Ferrari currently supply engines to three teams. Engine maker Cosworth is supplying engines for the Marussia F1 team, but is expected to pull out from the sports by the end of 2013. On the other hand, Honda will return for Formula One in 2015, supplying engines to McLaren. Ecclestone has been a staunch opponent of the new engines, saying their different sound will alienate fans and the extra cost being imposed on teams was unnecessary.

Topics: formula 1, engine

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