Charles Leclerc, Ferrari, Sochi Autodrom, 2021

New technology in Ferrari’s power unit update vital for 2022 – Binotto

2021 Russian Grand Prix

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Ferrari say the new power unit introduced on Charles Leclerc’s car last weekend offered modest performance gains but was a significant step forward in terms of technology.

The team is striving to make gains with its power unit, which was a key weakness last season, before a freeze on development comes into effect next year.

Ferrari’s sporting director Laurent Mekies said they were “satisfied” with the introduction of the updated power unit in Sochi last weekend. “There is no game changer there, but it’s working smoothly.”

Team principal Mattia Binotto declined to describe the extend of the gains Ferrari made, which is believed to be a single-digit increase in terms of horsepower.

“It is a step in terms of performance,” said Binotto. “But as Laurent said already, what’s more important for us certainly is it has pushed forward as much as we could that new technology because it will certainly help in the view of 2022 in terms of experience we can do,” he said.

“I’m happy now that Charles got it for and got it for the rest of the season, which still is somehow a step.”

Leclerc said there was a noticeable improvement from his power unit when he ran it for the first time on Friday. “I feel that it is a little bit better, which is great, and obviously the data confirms it,” he said. “It’s great to feel it and to see.”

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Dieter Rencken
Dieter Rencken has held full FIA Formula 1 media accreditation since 2000, during which period he has reported from over 300 grands prix, plus...
Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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22 comments on “New technology in Ferrari’s power unit update vital for 2022 – Binotto”

  1. Please please I want see something like 2019, highest acceleration and fastest car in the straights, that would spice up the rather boring DRS train especially qualified behind and making way up the grid position.

    1. you mean when they were cheating? it’s not going to be easy
      fool me once, shame’s on you. fool me twice…

      1. Never meant the cheating, but it’s fun to see that sort of clear performance over others, if not caught by the rules it’s ok. Meanwhile isn’t this year Mercedes also doing some sort of coolant sensor trick?

        1. Correction, was referring to the plenum sensor.

          1. When merc cheats it is called a clever approach.

          2. Sir Myrmidon
            No it isn’t. Been clever means find a loop hole within the rules to gain a competitive edge. Cheating is when from the outset you create a power unit to circumvent the very rules all are supposed to play by.

        2. Oh come on conspiracy theorist. Nothing was officially said as cheating, so it was not cheating. They found some clever loophole which got closed

  2. it’s still no good with the wrong tyres on!

  3. If the latest rumorsvare to be believed Binotto has had a fallout with Charles. Something will give.

    Dead-end street for Scuderia if they continue with the clown Mattia

    1. I can’t believe that. On what ground? Care to elaborate? I can see that Sainz had better communication with the team but Leclerc always blame himself on everything.

          1. That is one trash site

          2. Sir Myrmidon
            I see we agree at least on one thing.

  4. It makes sense to have full focus on engine development if it’s to be frozon for the coming years, but Ferrari should take equal pleasure how good the car was in Sochi now. Onboard the car seems to take the kerbs really well. Good engine, good suspension. Just needs to get lucky with the ’22 aero.

    1. @balue
      Ferrari have done a good job given where they were last year. They spent the development token on the gearbox casing which had a problem with regard to its torsional stiffness that compromised the geometry of the rear suspension and caused the car to understeer.

      They have also altered the rear suspension which normally requires a development token, though they successfully argued with the FIA that the suspension elements used are the same of last year and they only changed their arrangement. They have also brought some updates this year that were functional like the new floor which helped them reduce the tyre wear.

      Ferrari introduced a new battery, MGU-K and control electronics on the upgraded PU mounted on Leclerc’s car in Sochi. The main update was the switch from the lithium-ion battery with electrolyte to a solid-state battery which is rumoured to be 2 kg lighter and to a high voltage system (800 Volt) same as Mercedes and Honda. In theory, the new ERS system will require less cooling, enable faster charging and more efficient packaging.

      As for the PU development for 2022, Ferrari were running 2 parallel projects. One with the Mercedes split-turbo concept, the other with their actual turbo concept. Ferrari have committed to the latter project for the 2022 season and this is because of a breakthrough they have made with regard to the combustion technology. The V6 Turbo code-named “SuperFast” designed by Wolf Zimmermann in collaboration with the Austrian company AVL is already producing promising numbers on the dyno. Ferrari need to translate them into the track in 2022.

      1. Good info @tifoso1989. But wasn’t AVL going to be working with Red Bull Powertrains?

        1. @balue
          That was reported when Red Bull Powertrains was announced. On another note, it is expected now that VW is about to sign its involvement in F1, they are just finalizing the details. Maybe, this has put RBR’s plans with AVL on hold, just guessing. It’s worth to mention that the AVL collaboration with Ferrari started in late 2014 for the design of the Ferrari 059/4 used in the 2015 season.

  5. Looks like they found another way to hide the oil reservoir and feed line.

  6. Is it not possible to tell by the GPS data how much performance the upgraded engine brought to the car?

  7. The update definitely matched the expectations and looks fairly promising. It should come in handy in the fight for P3 in the WCC with McLaren, who also might have to take penalties for PU changes on Norris’ and Ricciardo’s car.

    Looking ahead to 2022, not only will it be crucial for Ferrari to nail the aero regs, but also to put themselves in a competitive position when the engine freeze starts to kick in.
    Ferrari are going in a different direction regarding the architecture of the ICE, compared to all the other manufacturers. This could still backfire, if it doesn’t work as planned and keep them in a position, not being able to win races and championships until at least 2026.
    However, if it does work well, Ferrari believe it could hand them an advantage, because they could burn the fuel more efficiently (more power with the same amount of fuel).

  8. I miss the days when articles actually had some content in them. I don’t even know why I bother to click on this.

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