The FIA has announced details of a new agreement to reduce the cost of F1 power units. It also intends to harmonise performance levels between the different engines and increase the noise they produce.
The deal will bring the price of customer power unit supplies down next year and again in 2018.
It will also require manufacturers to supply a power unit in the event a team finds itself without a supplier. However a statement from the FIA did not indicate whether these would have to be current-specification models.
In order to reduce the performance gap between the engines, restrictions on engine development are to be relaxed. Further changes are also been considered to increase the noise volume produced by the engines.
The new deal has been “approved by all levels of the F1 governance structure, including the World Motor Sport Council, and will now be included as Technical and Sporting regulations for the 2017 and 2018 FIA Formula One World Championship”, said the FIA.
The FIA also vowed to ensure the power unit regulations remain stable until at least 2020.
“As part of the power unit agreement, adherence to the measures outlined below will see the FIA commit to supporting power unit regulations stability and the maintaining of the current Formula One governance structure for the 2017-2020 period,” it added.
FIA statement on power units
Agreement has been reached on a significant reduction in the price of power unit supply to customer teams and a reduction in cost to manufacturers over the coming years.
• In 2017 the power unit price for customer teams will be reduced by €1m (£782,000) per season compared to 2016.
• From 2018, the annual supply price will be reduced by a further €3m (£2,347,000)
• Cost reduction on power units will be driven by changes to the Sporting and Technical regulations in 2017 and 2018, with a progressive reduction of the number of power unit elements per driver per season.
Supply of power units to customer teams will be ensured, as the homologation procedure will include an “obligation to supply” that will be activated in the event of a team facing an absence of supply.
The new agreement includes a package of measures aimed at achieving performance convergence.
• The token system is to be removed from 2017
• Additionally, constraints on power unit part weights, dimensions and materials, and on boost pressure will be introduced in 2017 and in 2018.
Manufacturers are currently conducting a promising research programme into further improving the sound of the current power units, with the aim of implementation by 2018 at the latest.
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