Toro Rosso team principal Franz Tost says the new version of Honda’s power unit has moved the Japanese manufacturer ahead of Renault.
“Honda is making big steps forward,” said Tost in an interview shared with RaceFans. “Yesterday we had the new spec in the car and was really fantastic.”
The upgrade means “Honda is in front of Renault” now, said Tost, adding he believes its “complete package” is now superior to the current Renault power unit.
“The power unit the years before was so not so reliable, not so strong. We knew some deficiencies but Honda caught up dramatically and they are doing a fantastic job.”
Toro Rosso switched from Renault to Honda power units at the end of last year. Sister team Red Bull will replace its TAG Heuer-branded Renault power units with Hondas for the 2019 F1 season.
Renault introduced the ‘C spec’ version of its power unit earlier this year. Red Bull reverted to the older B-spec version in Sochi for reliability reasons. But team principal Christian Horner said the team will switch back to the C-spec this weekend.
“We’ve now got two engines available to us between now and the end of the year,” said Horner. “This will be the engine that [Max Verstappen] uses in Mexico, and Daniel [Ricciardo]. We’ll use the C-spec in Japan.
“Hopefully we’ll have enough components to get to the end of the year penalty-free the last five races.”
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2018 F1 season
- Honda’s jet division helped F1 engineers solve power unit problem
- McLaren Racing losses rise after Honda split
- Ricciardo: Baku “s***show” was Red Bull’s fault
- “Drive to Survive Episode 1: All to Play For” reviewed
- F1’s television and social media audiences rose last year
31 comments on “Honda’s new spec three engine is better than Renault’s – Tost”
1st October 2018, 16:33
Ted Kravitz mentioned during his Sochi Notebook that he had heard Honda’s new spec engine is worth around 0.5 to 0.6 seconds per lap over the current engine. It’ll be interesting to see how much that jumps the STR boys in Japan. Just be reliable.
1st October 2018, 22:36
Would be perfect weekend if one of the cars even finishes the race.
1st October 2018, 22:56
Hard to believe. That would be an enormous power boost. First we will have to see if they can use the engine for an entire weekend.
2nd October 2018, 9:54
They were the ones with the lowest power so any increases could be % much bigger then for example Mercedes upgrade
Merc 1000 hp 1% increase would be 1010 hp as they are at their max
Renault 900 hp get a 5% means they get 45 hp totaling 945 hp
Honda 880 hp has for example a 10% as their engine isn’t maxed out would be 880+80= 960 hp
These values i made up for an example.
2nd October 2018, 10:43
Remember @mosquito this is Honda dress-rehearsing for a partnership with the big boys next year. All they’ve done with the new engine is catch up with everyone else. In that sense it’s not hard to believe, and the timing is certainly not a co-incidence, arriving at their home grand prix.
Pratyush P (@pratyushp276)
1st October 2018, 17:01
I’m inclined to trust Honda on this one, because whenever they’ve promised something, they’ve delivered.
1st October 2018, 17:32
@pratyushp276 – There are some sentences where you don’t even need to add a /s to show you’re being sarcastic :-)
1st October 2018, 19:10
Indeed, Honda’s upgrades have created quite the explosiveness one should expect from an F1 engine
1st October 2018, 17:19
To be honest I’d say I’m a fan of Honda and I’m excited at the prospect of seeing them finally come good… but after both cars failed to finish the last race (albeit not engine related) and we’ve not actually ‘seen’ this Honda engine that’s better than Renault’s perform in a race yet… I’d be inclined to keep quiet. Like if it is as good as they say then let the track performance speak for itself.
Though to be honest I hope it’s true. I think the best chance for a competetive season next year is Red Bull-Honda.
1st October 2018, 20:52
@rocketpanda, Honda themselves are being considerably more careful about what they say – they have avoided any comparison with any other manufacturer, simply commenting that the upgrade improves on the peak power output of the engine.
They have also been suggesting that they might postpone the reintroduction of this engine, which was originally meant to occur at the Japanese GP – they have admitted that the new engine has problems with putting excessive amounts of oscillation through the drivetrain, which is causing problems with drivability and concerns over reliability.
It is not as severe as the problems they had in 2017, which were fairly catastrophic at the start of the year, but it might take longer to remap the engines than originally hoped for – it might mean waiting until Austin instead. It also raises the question of whether the recalibration might have a knock on effect on performance in other areas, so perhaps Tost might have been better off waiting until the engine could be used in a race before praising Honda just yet.
juan fanger (@juan-fanger)
1st October 2018, 23:48
The failures at Sochi were engine related – the car is now too fast for the brakes ;)
bull mello (@bullmello)
1st October 2018, 18:51
The proof is in the pudding. No pudding, yet…
2nd October 2018, 19:22
I must say that when I read this:
does nothing but make me more sceptical. Surely they did not plan it this way – they must have had more problems than they expected if they took the engine out right away to “solve teething problems”.
1st October 2018, 20:02
Best of luck to them! Would love to see a competitive Honda/RBR combination next year.
1st October 2018, 20:13
I was told this four years ago
2nd October 2018, 9:56
By who….. Ron Dennis isn’t that the one of McLaren which body was unbeatable?
1st October 2018, 21:38
So Renault manage to find a way to be the worst engine manufacturer in F1 yet again? Merci Mr Abitofbull.
2nd October 2018, 12:16
Maybe before slating Renault you should wait and see if Honda have actually delivered what they promised. Pretty sure over 1 year ago Honda were banging on about their engine being just as powerful as Renault
2nd October 2018, 19:25
Yeah, what they delivered in reality was an update that was so good that they didn’t trust it to run 2 races in a row. Sorry but that looks like more of the same to me, not a huge step forward.
Remember the old, tired line “to finish first, you first have to finish”. Honda did an incredible job showing us the truth of that in the last few years. I’ll believe them when they really deliver.
Stephen Crowsen (@drycrust)
1st October 2018, 23:36
I was disappointed to see the double retirement of both Toro Rosso cars. I wondered if there’d been a slip up in the preparation of the cars because from the way Pierre spoke it appeared as though both retired for the same reason. I think Honda would have been very disappointed if their new engine is as good as they claim. Red Bull won’t be happy either because every race is now essential for next year, so to have both cars retire means a lost weekend.
1st October 2018, 23:58
@drycrust But I thought it was a brake problem with both, no?
Stephen Crowsen (@drycrust)
2nd October 2018, 16:59
@robbie I’d heard that too, and mistakenly thought someone must have forgotten to put brake fluid into the brake system, which would be part of the preparation of the car for a race (although I have no idea why you’d remove the brake fluid in the first place), hence Toro Rosso’s responsibility. However as MacLeod (@macleod) says below, the brake system is a brake by wire system. Isn’t the energy collected under braking part of the KERS system (MGU-K)? If so then that might be part of Honda’s responsibility, but again to have both cars fail suggest it was an omission that happened on both cars, which suggests a problem with the preparation of the cars. As I think about it, the changing nature of the problem suggests a leak of some sort, but both cars?
2nd October 2018, 8:27
And they used the old spec engine as they want to save the new spec for Japan. The front brake brake by wire went wrong so other part of the car.
2nd October 2018, 0:14
The press and paddock are hailing Honda’s new engine claiming they are getting closer.
In fact, if it weren’t for Ilmor, they still be floundering. They finally had to admit to themselves they couldn’t do it and sought outside help.
McLaren was prodding them to enlist help from the beginning with no success.
A bunch of arrogant losers.
2nd October 2018, 1:04
What’s any of this got to do with Ilmor? Nothing. It’s only Honda’s second season running this engine, so improvements were expected this year.
Fudge Kobayashi (@)
2nd October 2018, 10:07
And looking at the state of the McLaren chassis now it wouldnt really have made much of a difference to the final result regardless.
2nd October 2018, 1:12
Wow, they said that for the first time back in Silverstone 2015.
That’s some delay.
2nd October 2018, 9:57
Did Honda said that or a person who isn’t there anymore?
2nd October 2018, 14:51
Its difficult to be optimistic for Honda, given the last three years. That said, I do hope they get significant improvement. Great to tighten up the field and make the racing more exciting.
2nd October 2018, 15:42
I hope Honda finally get this right.
Unlike Danny Ric….
4th October 2018, 9:52
Let’s be positive, it’s been a long journey for Honda, I’m keen to see what Gasly does with the TR with this upgraded engine. Tost is entitled to his opinion and there’s nothing wrong with being enthusiastic. But on the whole from the winter testing the signs have only been positive relative to the previous years with Maclaren.
Comments are closed.