A lot of things are changing in Formula 1 this season. A new technical regulation, which will make the cars look very different, is being introduced. The engine formula will remain the same and will remain so through the 2025 season.
However, something will change with the fuel this year, which means that the engine suppliers had to get to work with their engines in the run-up to 2022. This is because E10 fuel is being introduced, consisting of 90% fossil fuels and 10% ethanol. That is more sustainable, after which the sport wants to switch to fully sustainable fuel in 2026.
However, the new fuel causes some engine power to be lost. In recent months, engine suppliers have been working hard to recover the power loss of the new engines, which will be used for four years according to specification.
Alpine and Ferrari on track
Over the past few weeks, there have been good reports from various camps. Renault is building a completely new engine, after almost nothing was changed in 2021 to the power source that is being developed near Paris. As a result, they were behind the competition in horsepower last year, but they were better able to focus on 2022.
The first sounds from France suggest that the French have already recovered the power loss caused by the new partial biofuel. “If the engine is reliable, then we will make a big leap,” the Alpine engineers are quoted as saying by Auto, Motor und Sport.
Italian media reported at the end of last year that there was also good news to report at the factory in Maranello. There too, despite the new fuel, they have already made progress in terms of engine power. It was close to that in 2020 and to a lesser extent in 2021, but in 2022 the Scuderia will be back in full swing in terms of engine, it is predicted. Fuel partner Shell would have played a major role in this.
Red Bull will receive a new engine from Honda for the last time at the beginning of this season, which will therefore have to be raced until 2025. If you fall behind now, it could be hindered for years to come. That is why it is very important that the Japanese quickly make up for the loss in power caused by the E10 fuel.
Although Helmut Marko is not yet in a panic, he admits that the Japanese have not yet managed to find the power that helped Max Verstappen to the world title in 2021. “Honda is working very hard on the adjustments. What I hear is positive, but the performance of the engine is not yet like in 2021. We have to wait and see what it will look like in terms of race pace,” said the Red Bull advisor.
There are currently no sounds from the Mercedes camp. Whether that is positive or negative, we will find out in March.
During the winter break, Formula 1 drivers have some time to catch their breath after a busy season. They certainly make use of this. Curious how the drivers spend the holidays? Then check out the video below.