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FOTA discusses 2013 engine rules as Porsche indicates interest in F1
FOTA discusses 2013 engine rules as Porsche indicates interest in F1
Posted By: James Allen  |  01 Oct 2010   |  3:08 pm GMT  |  117 comments

The FOTA Technical Working Group met yesterday in London to discuss the new rules for 2013 and today Porsche chairman Mattias Muller has indicated that he is likely to bring his company into F1 using either the Porsche or Audi brand.

Manufacturers not currently in F1 have been invited all along to be party to the ongoing discussions with teams and the FIA on the 2013 rules and I understand that the Porsche/Audi group have been part of that. The direction of travel is 1.6 litre turbo engines which would work with either brand.

The likely timing of a Porsche or Audi entry would be with the new engine formula. It is thought that they will either come in as an engine supplier or possibly as a shareholder in a team, like Mercedes were with McLaren. They will no doubt also do a feasibility study into acquiring an existing team, looking at the likely revenues to teams under the new Concorde Agreement, which many of the F1 stakeholders are hoping could be negotiated over this winter’s off-season break.

“With LMP1, there are two classes and two brands – Audi and Porsche. We do not like to both go into LMP1 [against each other]; that is not so funny,” said Mueller in an interview with Autocar’s Matt Prior.

“So therefore we have to discuss whether it makes better sense for one of the [two] brands to go into LMP1, and the other brand into F1. So we will have a round-table to discuss the pros and cons.”

If FOTA gets its way and the teams increase their share of the revenues from 50% to more like 75%, while keeping costs under control, then owning and operating an F1 team could become cost neutral or even profitable, with the added benefit of the immense global marketing reach. That may work out as a more viable option than part ownership or simple engine supply.

Porsche/Audi will have plenty of suitors among existing teams. Red Bull has cultivated strong links with Audi over the past few years and there are a number of business to business initiatives between them. Hispania Racing’s Colin Kolles is also well connected with Audi in Germany. Meanwhile Williams has a deal to supply hybrid technology to Porsche and the timing is just about perfect for the team to do some kind of deal as Sir Frank Williams and Patrick Head look to take a backward step from the business and release some of their equity.

Audi has never been in F1, although in the pre war days when it was called simply Grand Prix, Auto Union carried Audi’s famous four ring logo. It works very closely with Shell in sportscars, but Shell has a long standing relationship with Ferrari in F1.

The problem for Audi as a brand in F1 is that it’s motorsport programme is all about diesel technology, hence the endurance racing programme with Le Mans and ALMS. F1 isn’t likely to go diesel in the near future, so it would require a major strategic shift.

Porsche is synonymous with sportscar racing, but also has a history in F1, as a team in its own right in the 1960s – it won the 1962 French GP – and as an engine supplier to Footwork (Arrows) in 1991.

The TAG Turbo engines, made by Porsche, won 25 Grands Prix and three world championships with McLaren in the early 1980s.

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Components of an Car Insurance And The Law policy.

The Office of Fair Trading. You probably don’t drive as much.


You might be an incredibly brilliant particular person!



when ever we talk about cars and people mention Ferrari, i tell them about the PORSCHE Audi achievement over the years, The Le mans 917 Porsche, 959 with its Dakar, Audi with its UR Quattro, and the list goes on from GT1, GT2, GT3, and way deep into history with the Auto Union and so forth PORSCHE sets the bench mark for all super cars, i own a PORSCHE and am passionate about PORSCHE, i love Schumacher as a driver always, but still think PORSCHE should have been in F1 long time ago. show the world why all us PORSCHE owners say 2 words, “ONLY PORSCHE” time and time again! F1 would be good for them in a big way, F1 is the only reason FERRARI has stayed in business otherwise in all other races PORSCHES & AUDI RULE but in F1 its time for them to show the world they mean business and DOMINATE ALL!!!



diesels are a long way off in F1 – it’s not going to happen. nor is electric, quite simply there is no better method of energy storage than fuel. plus, until electricity production is cleaned up, it does nothing for the environment – in fact, if you plug your electric car into a coal powered station, you’re actually harming the environment far more than any gasoline car would.

as for everyone up in arms about the tiny engines, although the engine power is going to be down on current outputs (probably looking at 650bhp), KERS is going to have a much bigger impact and is not going to be artificially limited.

the FIA recognise the fact that the cars cannot be emasculated in terms of speed or sound and that the racing ‘spectacle’ should be maintained.

personally i think the sound of the current V8’s is already quite sad compared to the cars of the past and am quite looking forward to something a little different.


Porsche had a great history in diesel engines. Living on countryside in germany i remember all these aerodynamical tractors from Porsche in their red colour. Each tractor builder had his own colour: Lanz- blue, John Deer green, Massey – red,…

Same goes for Lamborghini: tractors before building sportcars

Watching how the formula 1 champion will probably come to its title in 2010 i wonder if Porsche will go even more back in history than the tractor area. You become champion in 2010 in winning crashes with other drivers: their car breaks , yours survives.

Didn’t Porsche design the Tiger Tank? And wasn’t that already diesel-electric? But the fuel, will the Tiger have enough fuel for a race even with its 1500 litre tank?


Ha ha, very good, who said Germans have no sense of humour!

Engines for armoured vehicles were my job til last year, you must be psychic… I think the average tank should be able to complete 2 hours without refuelling, not sure the blue flag would be quite as effective, great care required when lapping them!


This change in the regulations is a great opportunity to tailor the specification to align more closely with mass produced engines and systems to drive the technology advance, those who rightly say the major fuel usage is in the transport of all the hardware are missing this side benefit. Combined with allowing unlimited KERS usage F1 could really drive forward ‘economy with performance’ systems for city based vehicles that have a duty cycle not so dissimilar to driving around a race circuit.

Obviously to avoid a situation like last year where running KERS wasn’t really an advantage it would be necessary to make its usage mandatory to achieve braking performance, one way might be to frame the regulations along these lines.

– Limit the fuel tank size in conjunction with no in-race re-fuelling

-Allow the use of ‘forecourt’ petrol or diesel fuel

– Limit the effectiveness of the friction based total-loss braking systems

To drive fuel economy by reducing tank capacity alone would probably result in everyone running turbo diesels. I don’t have a problem with this, but the spectacle would be changed considerably due the reduced noise, on the plus side it would reduce the nuisance created to non-believers living around the circuits. Rather like the appearance of the 2009> cars vs those of two years back, fans soon forget and accept the current as the norm. Anyone who has listened to a high output unsilenced diesel working hard will understand firstly it’s by no means silent, nor is it necessarily unpleasant. Perhaps by modelling fuel consumption at each circuit races could be ‘equalised’ by adjusting the lap count such that each required the same amount of fuel energy to complete ie economy and performance would be linked at every event.

Limiting the size of the mechanical brake package and thereby it’s effectiveness would encourage the use of KE dissipation via whatever systems the teams choose to use. Another way might be to ban carbon-carbon composite brakes which for reasons of manufacturing cycle time and life are never going to be a practical proposition for everyday transport and simply place a financial burden on the teams to compete. Considering energy recovery systems it would be better to use KERS than say a retarder like trucks and buses use, which is a total loss and loads the cooling system. I would imagine for dynamic reasons it would need to be permissable to site braking devices to be shaft driven off the front wheels.

F1 can help justify it’s existance in this way, the technology spin-offs could actually be relevant to road vehicles where right now there isn’t a recognisable link.

I could see Audi / Porsche being really positive about going this route, however the big opposition would come from Ferrari who are not likely to want to develop diesel technology for their road cars and of course their voice in the FIA is disproportionately large as we all witness regularly.



Do you think McLaren will think start to supply their own engines when the current contract expires in 2015?


I’m going to look into that


Great news! Would be great to see them back to GP racing.

One note about the “Auto Union carried Audi’s famous four ring logo” line. In fact –since it’s rebirth in the 60s– Audi carries the AU’s famous four ring logo and not vica versa.


I’m not at all surprised … apparently Audi nearly entered formula 1 10 odd years ago and even bought a couple of formula 1 chassis for testing purposes. Perhaps the subsequent engine freeze drove them away that time. With its main commercial rival (BMW) now gone from F1 and Audi enjoying such success at LMP1 it makes more sense to use Porsche as the Volkswagen empire’s formula 1 brand. If BMW did come back or if Mercedes managed to reposition themselves commercially as a more dynamic brand, I’m certain a second team could be supplied with identical Audi badged engines.


Thanks for another good story.

off topic: James, what about the JA on Twitter?

Are the problems almost solved?


F1 is definitely starting to look healthier now with talk of more manufactorers joining. The past few years have been worrying ones with teams dropping out at an alarming rate.

James, if F1 is not profitable how do non-manufacture teams survive? You wouldn’t run a loss making business and an f1 team is essentially no different.


I feel it is a signal that F1 is looking healthier when manufacturers consider taking part. I’m not sure they would, at least from a spectator’s point of view, be part of the improvement process.

Audi/Prosche/whatever is not Ferrari.

Historically we’ve had manufacturers enter and then leave, seemingly on a whim. Prosche all but destroyed Le Mans – going back a few yers I know but then so do I.

The ones who have stayed to fight it out have been Ferrari, Williams and McLaren. One could argue, and with some justification, that McL were a new team with MP4 so is the baby.

Teams dropped out in the past for a variety of reasons but over recent years there has been some suggestion that it was the FIA management that put them off. Or frightened them away. Todt, despite suggestions of doom and gloom prior to what passed for an election, is a different animal and might be able to attract new teams.

VAG have stuck their noses in at this moment because of the new Concord agreement negotiations. They are trying to influence the outcome and they are not even in F1 at the moment.

I can’t see them running in two senior formulae so it will probably be au revoir to the ACO.


I’d really like to see *some variation amongst engines! I just can’t *stand it when they legislate identical 8 cyl or 4 cyl or 3 1/2 cyl or whatever specs! Then they all spend a zillion bucks on microscopic tweaks but they still all look and sound the same. That sux.


Too true. Duelling cam covers doesn’t excite me either. Renault innovated turbos and pneumatic valves. Sure, catching up costs money but I watch F1 because Renault’s cleverness gave them an advantage, not because they’re Renaults.


Absolutely agree, mate!! Great point. A little variation could be fantastic, couldn’t it?


even to think about diesel in the f1 is too much, -the end is near! 😉


In terms of future engine developments and alternative power sources, perhaps Jaguar are showing the way with their new C-X75 concept that has been shown at the Paris Motor Show. The car uses two micro-turbines that weigh only 55lb (approx 25kg) each and are powered by almost anything from biofuel oil to LPG producing 95hp each. These turbines do not drive the wheels, instead they charge the batteries that power four lightweight electric motors which drive the wheels, producing a combined 780hp and 1179 foot-pound of torque.

Oh and they sound like more like a jet airliner.


That would be wonderful except for one little fact: they’re not going to build one.

Which means they can’t. So its all PR BS.

“Concept” cars at the show are just that: pie in the sky, wild blue yonder imagination, simple PR stunts, with no other redeeming qualities, that will never be built.


I’d love to see Audi in F1. Their motorsports teams are innovative and always seem to find something in a rulebook to use as their advantage. They have historically come in to a series and been ultra competitive from the start. Rally, Trans-Am, DTM, Touring cars, Le Mans….etc etc. Funnily, the Audi teams seem to either re-write the textbooks, or cause the re-writing of the rulebooks.

The four rings have built their brand quite well recently compared to the other two big Germans, and I see modern F1 as a step up from Le Mans style racing for “bragging rights”.

Obviously I’m not an expert at all, but I don’t really see the diesel focus as being a deal-breaker, since they still chose to race in a few series where quattro wasn’t allowed, and that is one of their most recognisable brand images.


I agree Audi would be my choice too. People say “well they’re only diesel” – forgetting that they *made the diesel revolution at Le Mans happen! And I saw them change the entire ass-end of a car in 2 minutes – you dont get that kind of thinking in F1 anymore. If they can do that, they can do F1 proud.

Their ingenious outside the box engineering is something needed in F1, where we need *substantive change, not millions of microscopic tweaks!

And btw the reason imho that F1 is the way it is nowadays, with spec engines and spec floors and spec this and that is that nobody wants to try something new that might make them *lose! They’re not willing to go balls-out engineering for a *winner. No, the Corporation just doesn’t want to *lose. Totally defensive mindset.


I think this is an ideal opportunity to remove major car companies from team ownership.

Look at the way Honda, Toyota & BMW used and abused F1 in the last couple of years.

My idea would be to have a separate championship for engine suppliers along side the drivers and team championships.

Maybe have a smallish limit to how many cars a manufacturer can make per year – say 10,000 so that Ferrari (and maybe McLaren) would qualify as a team owner and an engine supplier.

Might even stop the threat of a break-away series that destabilised the sport in recent times.

By the way – this years engine supplier championship would currently be:

Mercedes 589; Renault 516; Ferrari 353; Cosworth 57 (I think)


While that would be interesting it would just confuse teams’ “strategy” more. Now they have to consider team and driver championships – and some days it seems they can’t get *that right – but add in engines…

Remember the old saying – “the difficulty in agreeing on a place to go to lunch increases as the square of the number of ppl going?”


Smaller capacity turbos will appeal to the manufacturers, especially if KERS and other future pointing technology is included, and also allow a nod towards improving the sport’s ‘green’ credentials. Personally, I would like a greater power output than appears to be being discussed.

I would have thought the Porsche name, being the higher end brand, was the more likely for F1. It would seem to me to be counter-productive to have your Ferrari equivalent having a lower sporting profile than your Lexus. Also, in addition to sportscars, Audi is a major player in DTM which, virtually by definition, is outside of Porsche’s territory, and while Mercedes is currently combining the two (no wonder Haug has gone grey), sportcars and DTM is a better fit than F1 and DTM, particularly if BMW joins the latter, for a predominantly (prestige) saloon car brand.


It would be awesome to see Porsche in F1. With the new rules and 4-cyl turbos….I think it would be great to see Porsche tie-in F1 technology with a 4-cylinder engine and bring back the 914 for the masses. It would be a coup for Porsche. Make it light-weight, RWD and I don’t care where you mount the engine…just keep it under $45,000 US. No need for traction control or DSG either….straight up 6-speed manual transmissions to separate the men from the girls.


that was the 986/987 attempt.

Mike from Medellin, Colombia

That’s great news. Good to see manufacturer interest in F1 again. We will probably never again see a similar level of interest as we had in the mid 2000s.

Just a small point James…the Audi logo that you are using is an old style logo. The new logo adopted is with “Audi” in a different font and larger rings.


Whilst I would be glad to see another engine in F1, I’d be saddened to see another famous name go. Please, if it happens, let it be a Williams-Porsche rather than just a Porsche.


Sincerely hope we don’t see Williams sell out to a foreign owned racing team. Williams can only be Williams if it remains an independent British racing team.


I dont think anybody that buys WilliamsF1 will get rid of the name, they have too much history behind it. After Ferrari and McLaren, Williams is the longest continously running team in F1 today. (correct me if Im wrong)


A difficult one. I really hope Williams returns to the top but it has had a difficult few years and, if I’m honest, I think I’d rather the name disappeared than witness the sad death throes of Lotus or Tyrrell or BRM again.

There’s readers who will only know Tyrrell and BRM from books and so it will be for many names in the future. F1 moves on.


Am I allowed to reply to myself? Better still, buy out Hispania!

James, I’ve heard your performance in nearly holding Alesi has secured you the second car for Abu Dhabi …


1600cc turbo????

Get real boys we all want big engines like the v10’s but we wont get them.

James, whatever happened to Whitmarsh, Head, Stewart and many other’s suggestion that a 2000cc V6 turbo would be a better option and more importantly make a proper sound.This would be less stressed (less boost required) than a 1600cc and be in line with the making engines last theory.

I think the engine has to be right and satisfy all parties ie the fans wanting an engine that sound right, give us a v6 perleeeese mister!!!!


Despite the McLaren-TAG past, I can’t really see Porsche linking up with McLaren as they will soon be making a directly-competing road car, BMW and Williams seemed to end their relationship on less-than-friendly terms and Porsche’s last involvement with a midfield team (Footwork) was a bit of a shocker so who do they team up with?

Buying Toro Rosso would appear to be the cheapest choice if they are going for ownership but they would probably have to invest heavily in it – with the Italian base rebadging it as Lamborghini F1 would seem to be a more natural fit – when I think of Porsche it’s always sportscars that spring to mind.

From a cultural, geographical and infrastructure viewpoint surely buying Sauber would make the most sense especially as it has proven that it is capable of building a race-winning car (and some dogs!). Also I can’t help but think that Peter Sauber would see a sale to VW as preferable to ensure the long-term future of the team (just don’t mention BMW…).


If i want to see 1.6L 4 pots racing around ill go to my local asda carpark after midnight. F1 is about power and glamour. Let them have 3.0 engines again, with no restrictions, but 4 per season. A mix of V8/V10/V12 would add some magic that we have been missing for a few years. Pretty much every manufacturer makes road going 3.0L engines, how many make 1.6 turbos? I dont see the relevance a 1.6L has to Porsche or Ferrari.


Mem’ries! Whilst I love the sentiment, I guess the truth is outside factors will dictate F1’s future engine formula and 1.6 turbos have more everyday road and commercial relevance than large multi-cylinder, thoroughbreds.

Remember the 1980s? Everything from the Porsche 911 to the humble Metro came as a turbo! I drove a girlfriend’s Montego turbo once (that was more than enough), I couldn’t believe it was possible to buy so much understeer in a single purchase!


‘Lo again all. Back on air.

BRM. Ahhhh. With all due respect to apologies to Ferrari, every BRM ever built sounded glorious, better to my ear than a Ferrari, especially the supercharged V16.

Anyway, I just want to point out that maybe a 1600cc, 4-cylinder formula could bring in a greater diversity of engines than just VW-Porsche-Audi. I wrote a column that ran in Racecar Engineering a couple of years back, arguing for a motorcycle engine based F2 (ironically enough, that piece ran in the same issue that announced the current spec-formula F2. Ouch). That same idea can, and should, work in F1 as well.

Motorcycle engines are ubiquitous in club and lower professional car racing categories. Suzuki’s 1300cc Hyabusa road bike engine, alone, has been tuned and turbocharged to exceed 600 horsepower. Indeed, ‘Busa engines (in various states of displacement and tune) and Quaife transmission combinations are as common in bike-engined cars as the classic Cosworth/Hewland set-up.

Suzuki, Ducati, Yamaha, Honda, BMW, Kawasaki, Harley-Davidson, KTM and others all have outstanding racing engines (MotoGP, various Superbike series, NHRA drag racing classes, etc.) that produce 200 bhp or more without supercharging, all of them at 1200cc displacement or less. It is entirely logical to conclude that suitably enlarged and supercharged derivatives of any of these engines will produce power adequate to the task under the rumored F1 engine regs.

I’d like to see a supercharged a Formula BMW (powered as it is by a 1300cc BMW motorcycle engine), or one of its numerous equivalents in various national series, used as a test mule for this idea. And I’d love to see such a Frankencar rock up to Silverstone and run an F1-caliber time (insert manic laughter here).


Within the next couple of years you’ll see all the major manufacturers producing them and many do already actually! Although F1 isn’t the technological tour de force it used to be car companies like Vw group are attracted simply because it means ppl who buy cars will associate F1 with their 1.6litre turbo golf and they can flog the link to death in glossy magazine adds! I’m pretty sure that BMW were running a 1.5litre 4cyl turbo in the 80’s that was putting out 1500Bhp!


4 cylinder 1.6 turbo engines would be logical because nearly all manufacturers have one. But I’ll be disappointed if it happens, I love the sound of a V formation engine, its individual tone screams power and speed to my ears before I even see the car. A V6 turbo engine was suggested once, that would be great, high revs and a whistling turbo, perfect.

Although, if the 4 cylinder engine has a huge turbo with 1400BHP like the BMW’s in the eighties, I’ll be a happy man. Dream on I guess


Why do some people think a 1.6 litre engine cannot be a V — or horizontally opposed for that matter? An engine manufacturer could make a 1.6 litre V8 or V10 that could rev to 20,000 rpm or more, with no problem, if they wanted and it seemed appropriate to meet the rules.

With turbo or supercharging the only limiting factor on the power output is the ability of the materials from which the engine is made to stand the stresses.


Quite right,i seem to remember BRM produced a V16 from 1500cc,and as much as i think a 1.6 4 cylinder engine might sound a bit “weedy” i remind myself of Honda,s wonderful V2 1000cc VTR bike,which completely intoxicating.


The VTR was a dullard, the SP1’s and SP2’s were the mutts nuts. Tuned with loads of power at the top end rather than low end torque.

But this isn’t the place to reminisce about how much better bike racing is…


A 20,000rpm 1.6 litre V10 no problem! Suggest that to the manufacturer’s, they could do with a laugh.


Well, BRM did make a forced induction 1.5 litre V16 in the 1950’s. And that sounded awesome.

It’s not ridiculous at all. Trying to make your racing engines SEEM road-relevant is ridiculous. (“Look! My hatchback has a turbocharged petrol engine just like an F1 car!” See how ridiculous that sounds?)

Obviously a lot of R&D goes into a race car, regardless of the series, which will never make it into road cars. So when it’s not road-relevant why not make the cars look and sound good? (And yes, I hate the way this year’s cars look. Blasted snow-plough front wings, toy-car tail wings and horrible shark-fins. Ugh!)


Even a high-revving 1.6 litre V4 would probably sound rather nice.


The only rumours we’ve heard refer to 4 cylinder 1.6’s



James, would i be correct in thinking that the Mercedes engine deal with McLaren ends at the end of 2012? Also, do you think that the 2013 McLaren may be powered by a McLaren engine?


I recall it being longer than that. Five years starting this year, wasn’t it?


James, you seem to be right:

“As part a realigned long-term alliance, McLaren will continue to use Mercedes engines until at least 2015,…”


I believe it was free engines till 2012 with the option to purchase till 2015


My bad, i sit corrected!

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