Changes in Formula One occur just about as often as Charles Barkley chows down on cheeseburgers, so it really didn’t come as a surprise that F1 is on the verge of having a new engine formula that would run for six years starting in 2013.
According to Spanish newspaper El Mundo Deportivo, an agreement in principle has been reached to begin using - effective in 2013 - a four-cylinder, 1.5 liter engine that comes with twin-turbo, direct injection, and the KERS system.
In an interview with Autocar magazine at the Beijing Motor Show, Ferrari CEO Amedeo Felisa said that F1 should take the necessary steps to begin using engines that could also be translated to road-driving conditions. "If F1 has to develop something helpful for real (road) driving conditions, then the best solution is for an engine that is turbocharged and GDI (gasoline direct injection)," he said.
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Norbert Haug of Mercedes echoed Felisa’s sentiments, despite also pointing out that F1 should remain invested in taking advantage of high technology in developing their race cars. "Smaller engines should be used for consumption and emissions," he said. "But you still need to look at the whole picture. If you fly from Europe to Japan on a 747, you would use more fuel than an entire F1 season."
For now, further development of the 2.4-liter V8 engines that are used today in F1 cars have been ’frozen’, at least until powerful engines that are more fuel-efficient and emit less pollution - and likewise affordable to the smaller teams - become available.