The Americans are in control of Formula One now, and so the powers-that-be heard y’all think F1 engines are way too quiet. The fact (yes, fact) that internal combustion racing engines should be God’s gift to eardrums might as well be in the fine print of our own Bill of Rights, and thank goodness, key stakeholders in F1 just agreed to improve the noise, cost and power of its next-gen powerplants.
The FIA, the governing body that oversees F1, came to an agreement with F1's current engine manufacturers as well as other potentially interested manufacturers on Friday regarding F1 power units after 2020, reports ESPN.
The much-loathed 1.6-liter turbocharged V6 hybrids, notoriously quieter than the naturally aspirated V8s they replaced, will be getting the boot in favor of a better sounding, more powerful and more cost-effective solution. What form that will take isn’t yet clear, though.
The stakeholders agreed that F1 must maintain its position as the ultra-innovative “pinnacle of motorsport” while also getting an engine solution with more relevance to road cars after 2020. They must be cheaper to develop and make, but also more powerful, and allow drivers to keep driving harder and harder. And of course, they need to sound good. All of these things sound like a step in the right direction aimed at getting more manufacturers back into the sport.
Interestingly, the Volkswagen Group was one of the companies in attendance. Perhaps hopes of a potential Audi Formula One effort aren’t dead yet.
Either way, it already looks like F1's new overlords are steering things in the right direction if we’re already talking about fixing things that fans have complained about for the entirety of the V6 turbo hybrid era.
You’re welcome, rest of the world. This today, pushrod V8s tomorrow. Just you wait and see.