Automotive

FIA 2014 Formula One regulations published - with surprises

FIA 2014 Formula One regulatio...
The FIA published their revised technical regulations for 2014 Formula One season last week and they never fail to surprise
The FIA published their revised technical regulations for 2014 Formula One season last week and they never fail to surprise
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The FIA published their revised technical regulations for 2014 Formula One season last week and they never fail to surprise
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The FIA published their revised technical regulations for 2014 Formula One season last week and they never fail to surprise

The FIA (Fédération International de l'Automobile) published its revised technical regulations for 2014 Formula One season last week. Having caused uproar amongst the engine manufacturers and F1 fans with a proposal for replacing the naturally aspirated V8s of today with turbo-charged 4-cylinder engines, an agreement was finally reached amongst the various interested parties to introduce turbo-charged V6s of 1.6 liter displacement. The continuing effort by the the FIA to "green" the sport and push development still provided a number of surprises in the published regulations, however.

The biggest shock is that the cars will have to move under electrical power only in the pit lane. Engine ignition and fuel systems must be shut off. This has a number of ramifications. To ensure there is enough power to move the cars quickly in and out of the pit lane, the capacity of energy recovery systems has been increased to 120kW. To ensure that amount of power is available, in addition to the mechanical energy recovery system (today's KERS) there will be allowed a heat energy recovery system that operates off the exhaust gases. The most interesting consequence is that the cars will have to carry their own starter motors under the control of the driver, since the engine will need re-starting the moment they exit the pit lane.

There are a number of other changes - the width of the front wing is reduced to 1,650 mm (65 inches), less than the width of the car, and the construction of the front and rear wings has been more strictly defined, in part to reduce the number of front wing collisions. The minimum weight of the car has been increased by 20 kg/44 lbs (in consideration of the weight of the energy recovery systems), plus the eight forward gear ratios and the mandatory reverse must be declared at the beginning of the season and cannot be changed - although for 2014 only, the teams will be allowed to change them once.

There is always wailing and gnashing of teeth at each new development of the world's most advanced racing formula. The circuit owners are very concerned that the reduction in maximum revs (down to 15,000 rpm) and the use of turbos will severely reduce the noise level that is part of motor racing. Those of us that remember the last time turbos were used will share those concerns.

The mandatory use of electrical power in the pit lanes could be a stroke of genius however, since this instantaneous switching between combustion and electrical engines is likely to be a very common real-world scenario. It is after all the justification of F1 that its technology trickles down to the High Street and Autobahn, and you can be sure that there will be intense development of the "re-starter" motors by the teams - pit stops will be fascinating. Team mechanics are going to have to keep their eyes peeled at all times for cars arriving in the pits - they won't be able to hear them.

The complete list of the revised regulations can be viewed as a PDF file.

25 comments
Mr Stiffy
Formula one is a tax payer funded scam anyway.
A big area around the race track drowning in engine noise... for MILES and MILES.
Hugely expensive tickets even for the most shittiest of seats... I mean standing positions.
All the scam artist vendors selling 1 hotdog, in a white goo-bread roll and a coke for like $20, that usually comes from the supermarket for $2.
Crowds and toilets...
Formula one should be scrapped - it\'s batch of vampires going from one land to the next sucking the places dry.
Rule changes? It\'s nothing being done that is not already available - and much of it by the ordinary people.
johnniesazzler
Seems to me that in many respects the real world has overtaken Formula 1. Can\'t quite see any of the benefits F1 is providing to everyday drivers, that haven\'t already been generated by the energy crisis.
Bill Bennett
and most of the new hybrid cars, just FASTER not more fuel efficient, most disgusting, the manufacturers and the buying public need to realize it is about conservation, not faster, so many stupid people on this planet, a Mickie BenZ AMG in the headlines for days 0 to 62 mph in less than 4 seconds, oh please, that is so last century, so sad for humanity, we will kill ourselves
Slowburn
Even if they invent nothing new, the money they invest in making things light and reliable is appreciated.
Expensive tickets, monopoly pricing from the vendors, and lines for the toilets is expected and if the hosting city does not think they are getting their money\'s worth, they don\'t have to renew the contract.
johnpsom
@Mr Stiffy, @johnniesazzler, @Bill Bennett I don\'t know who you are or what your are doing in your lifes but hope to be really good to what you are doing and very healthy and i am sure you are since most of your everyday life that i believe it is getting better, are due to innovations that either implemeting and sent to the limit or inveted in F1. Highest examples are all the new materials that make our life better and reducing C02 footprints came from F1 so that to fly for your holidays, to break safer while driving your car, making your helmet stronger when riding your bike, and so many other examples...not to mention inventions that lead direct to medical inventions that save lifes...
For something to be able to say it is bad or good, you have to look not only the direct impact it has in life, but the indirect also...
Brillig
You do not need a starter to start an engine if you are already at speed. Just pop the clutch. The problem, of course, is that the vehicle will be decelerating using this procedure where it should be accelerating. But a starter is not necessary.
paulblez
I wish the MotoGP organisers were as imaginative when changing the regs as the F1 people are!
dgate
johnpsom just name anything and I will bet it was the aerospace industry that introduced it and the F1 industry made use of it. You need to expand your interests beyond F1.
millgate
Hi, what a superb opportunity for F1 .....
Thousands of motoring fans have taken to using Hydrogen Supplementation in their cars so; why not F1 ?
Read why F1 should do so, here ... http://preview.tinyurl.com/5skps4g
Less fuel would be used, better running would probably be experienced - and emissions free exhausts would become the \'standard\'.
The FiA is seeking lower noise emissions - so why not go the whole way and achieve virtually emissions free exhausts too ?
Worldwide - millions of road miles a day for years have never produced a broken or damaged engine - to my knowledge.
The world\'s motoring communities are - daily - delivering cleaner driving - AND GREATLY REDUCED CARBON FOOTPRINTS FROM EVERY HYDROGEN SUPPLEMENTED VEHICLE ON THE PLANET - with greater fuel economy; and whilst cleaning up their engines and making them last longer.
C\'mon FiA ... even if you don\'t make it a rule change this year ... tell the teams they are at liberty to use Hydrogen Supplementation. That would be a great message to the fan base - and a REAL CHALLENGE to Big Oil, Big Motor and Big Government.
Let\'s hear it from the fans .......................!!!!!!!
L8RB
@Mr Stiffy: with exception of the \'taxpayer\' comment, how does this differ from football, basketball, hockey, baseball, Nascar, Tour d\' France, rugby, futbol, Indy/Champ car, etc, etc, etc, etc...it is still Billionaires employing Millionaires to put on a show to alleviate us from the pennies we actually work for!!!
If you despise it so, do as I do: DON\'T GO! Stay home, pay your pound of flesh to your preferred video supplier, and watch it on tv in the air-conditioned, multi-camera view comfort of your very own hovel...and buy your hotdogs and soda-water at your favorite outlet store.
As to the \'taxpayer\' funding, I\'m sure big bad Bernie (that\'s Ecclestone, not Madoff) would LOVE to scam those stupid Americans out of free money to put on his show, but instead he does it to the tracks and teams...they just pass it on to you and smile!