It would seem that the Formula 1 rule makers will push ahead with radical changes to the engine regulations for the 2013 season, despite some reluctance from F1 supremo Bernie Ecclestone and several of the sport’s key engine manufacturers.
The sport currently runs under an ‘engine freeze’ of 2.4-lire normally-aspirated V8 engines, and looks set to switch to energy recovery-boosted 1.6-litre four-cylinder turbo powerplants with fuel restrictions, if the F1 Commission and the FIA World Motor Sport Council (WMSC) give the green light to the rule changes.
It is hoped that the ‘greener’ engine technology will encourage new manufacturers into a sport that has lately been criticised for not adopting a more environmentally-friendly focus, and until recently the VW group had expressed such an interest.
However, some of the sport’s current engine builders – most notably, Ferrari – were reportedly against the changes to the regulations, claiming that such a redesign with substantially increase operating costs.
There were also concerns that the new rule might benefit one single manufacturer, but the sport’s current rules have built in clauses to equalise performance and not give any one outfit a substantially greater advantage (although many fans would certainly argue that this is not the case!).
But it seems that the FIA will press on regardless, and looks set to announce the new regulations on Friday 10 December – even Ferrari has said (via a spokesperson) that it would be “surprised” if the rule changes were not given the green light.
“An agreement is there, and when there is an agreement you work accordingly,” they said.
“We have a very good engine formula. Why should we change it to something that is going to cost millions of pounds and that nobody wants and that could end up with one manufacturer getting a big advantage?” asked Bernie Ecclestone recently.
It seems we’ll be waiting for the announcement regardless…
[Original image via XPB]