A compromise has reportedly been reached in Formula 1 that will guarantee the future participation of all the current engine suppliers, while satisfying the FIA's drive for more fuel-efficient propulsion.

Plans were (until now) in place for F1 to switch from the current 2.4-liter V8 engines to 1.6-liter turbo fours by 2013. However, some of the current propulsion suppliers – Ferrari most vocally among them – vehemently objected to the proposal. The compromise agreement arrived at by the Formula 1 Commission is to replace both formulas with new turbocharged V6 engines, also 1.6 liters in displacement, which will still allow the integration of KERS regenerative braking by 2014 – one year later and two cylinders greater than initially planned.

The proposal still needs to be approved by the FIA's World Motor Sport Council, but if adopted would apparently satisfy both sides of the debate, including Ferrari's hesitance (at one end) and Renault's insistence (on the other) towards downsizing the current engines. What this will mean for planned newcomers like Craig Pollock's PURE outfit, however, which was already working on a turbo four, remains to be seen.


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  • 40 Comments
      Boost Retard
      • 4 Years Ago
      Screw Ferrari. They don't make a V6, either...how is this better for them than a turbo four? How about this compromise...why not just make the formula 1.6 liter turbo engines, but leave the option to make a four or a six in any configuration? That way, there's some variety in engine designs while achieving the fuel efficiency they're shooting for. Although either way, Ferrari is designing a new engine that has less cylinders than any of their road cars have, but it leaves the option open for reviving the Dino.
        John Hughan
        • 4 Years Ago
        @Boost Retard
        I'm just guessing here, but I'm guessing that since Ferrari makes V12s and V8s, they'd be able to adapt those designs to a V6 whereas an I4 would be a from-scratch design. The current M3's V8 is essentially the same as the V10 in the M5/M6 with 2 cylinders chopped off, for example.
      Max Neptune
      • 4 Years Ago
      Actually it was 1.4 liter 4 cylinders they were planning to change to. The main idea with a 1.6 liter V6 is it is more relevant to high performance engines offered (or potentially offered in the future). Ferrari and Mclaren have both implied interest in putting small displacement turbo charged V6's in future road vehicles. I doubt Ferrari or Mclaren would put an inline 4 cylinder in a high performance road vehicle. Also the engine in an F1 car is a fully stressed component, meaning that it essentially forms a load bearing member of the chassis. A small V6 would be easier to implement in a similar manner to today's designs. An inline 4 would require a completely new rethink of engine and chassis design, sending costs even higher.
        Bird2112
        • 4 Years Ago
        @Max Neptune
        I suggest that you review Ferrari's history...the 500 and 750 4 cylinder cars were very successful in Formula One and Formula Two from 1951-1957. The engines were designed by Lampredi, who later based his design for the Fiat Twin-Cam motor in the 124 series cars off of this engine, reversing intake and exhaust, and using a belt for timing instead of the noisier chain, among other design changes for a series production engine.
      Alex
      • 4 Years Ago
      Why not either V6 or I6 configurations? Or even Turbo 6 or N/A 8. Give some variety already!
      Easy_Eight
      • 4 Years Ago
      Can't they just run both like they did in the eighties.
      dizzy
      • 4 Years Ago
      It would have interesting to see what kind of powerplants would have come out had the 4-pot stipulation remained. Restrictions bring out the best in engineers and some real engineering might & magic would have been on display. However, just like Mr. McMiller, I couldn't imagine the cars sounding all that good.
      Jonathan Arena
      • 4 Years Ago
      Why not allow both? It would be great to see some diversity of technology again
      lf
      • 4 Years Ago
      Make up your Fn minds F1. Ecclestone et al have made this series into a joke. smh.
      4 String
      • 4 Years Ago
      1.6L V6's*? o.o Whoa Sounds sexy *(even if twin-turbo'd)
      hp
      • 4 Years Ago
      If they keep dropping cylinders at this rate, in a few decades, they will be racing pedal powered cars, damn hippies, leave our F1 ALONE!
        Marcel
        • 4 Years Ago
        @hp
        Well, the meanest beasts in F1 history, somwhere around the 80's, had 1.5l 4 cylinder turbocharged engines that produced nearly 1500 bhp. Looks like hippies were running F1 back then as well.
      TokyoRemix
      • 4 Years Ago
      Good. Just something about hearing "four-cylinder" made me shudder in disbelief. It takes away from what is a thrilling sport's image. It's like saying, "Oh my God, my mother's been shot! ...with a paintball gun." YAY V6!
      BipDBo
      • 4 Years Ago
      Wow. 6 cylinders at 1.6 liters is going to scream at some seriously high rpms. It's a thrill to hear the V8s go by pushing 200mph, but I will definately buy tickets just to hear those turbos.
        Rotation
        • 4 Years Ago
        @BipDBo
        It'll be lower revs than current 2.4L V8s. 1.6L with just 1 bar of boost would be similar to an effective displacement of 3.2L, meaning the revs would then fall by 25% to about 12,000 in order to make the same power. At 1.6 bar of boost (more likely, as even street cars can get to 1.6 bar) they would have an effective displacement of 4.2L and the revs would fall to closer to 9,000 to make the same power. I'm kind of unfamiliar with the idea of hearing turbos. Turbos are very quiet and they make the engines they are attached to quieter also by using up exhaust energy that would otherwise be emitted as sound energy.
      Rotation
      • 4 Years Ago
      Still stupid. Formula 1 cars should be based upon revs, not turbos. The very sound the engines make is F1s trademark. Turbos will muffle the exhaust sound. Also, I can't see why a series with that big billboard jutting up on the back of the car doesn't use I6s instead of V6s.
        Jonathan Arena
        • 4 Years Ago
        @Rotation
        You do realize that some of the best F1 cars of all time used turbo v6's, right?
          Rotation
          • 4 Years Ago
          @Jonathan Arena
          Yes. The RS10 was a long time ago though. Over 30 years. This isn't 1977, Formula 1 is in a totally different position now. And cars didn't have the big billboards on the back of the car before. Why use a V6 when you can package an I6 behind the driver more easily?
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