Ferrari Formula 1 Team has performed another u-turn, though this time not through their car performance. After originally opposing the idea of an ‘Engine Freeze,’ they have finally caved in.
After Honda made the decision to quit the sport at the end of 2021, Red Bull had come up with the plan to freeze engine developments. They found unlikely allies in Mercedes. However, the ‘Prancing Horse’ and Renault were not in agreement with that idea. They wanted to push with engine development even after 2021. However, after recent talks with FIA, they have reversed their stance.
The governing body swayed Ferrari by bringing preponing the introduction of next-generation power units by 1 year. Initially, the plan was to introduce them in 2026, but now it has been moved to 2025. Confirming that they would back the engine freeze now, Team Principal Mattia Binotto said –
“We are supportive in trying to anticipate by one season, one year, the freezing of the engines. Because that would mean as well trying to anticipate to 2025 the new regulations for the power units.
“Knowing the situation and understanding the situation, it’s not the first time that Ferrari is acting in a responsible way in that respect. So we will support freezing, by anticipating by one year the engines, the power unit,” Binotto added.
Having Ferrari on board means that the proposal to freeze the engines is closer to becoming a reality. However, they want no parity in performance with other manufacturers before the freeze happens. Understandably so, as the likes of Mercedes, Honda, and even Renault are ahead of them in engine performance.
Thus, they would like to close that gap before the end of 2021 –
“Talks are an ongoing moment with the FIA, with F1, if we should consider a mechanism of engine convergence. If there is any situation where eventually a manufacturer is really down on performance compared to the others.
“Because then it’s freezing for three years the relative performance between manufacturers. “
Not only do they want it to be more ‘sustainable’, but they also demand complete clarity on its rules by the middle of 2021. “To have a brand new format of power-unit in 2025, we will need by the middle of next year clarity on the regulations. It has to be more sustainable in terms of a cost point of view.”
The Italian team makes an excellent point here. With growing concerns for the environment, there is pressure on F1 to become a more eco-friendly sport. Teams are also looking to reduce cost and carbon footprint through these new regulations. Hence, it is important to get them right as they will determine the future of the sport for the next 5 years, from 2025 to 2030.