The F1 engine has been a favourite of the paddock for years, but this year Ferrari have been busy bringing the engine to the grid.
The Corvairs engine is the most powerful, but has been used on so many cars it’s a wonder they’ve not taken it up a notch or two.
We know Ferrari have a lot of power, but what about the power consumption?
The answer is that it’s the same.
According to Ferrari’s own testing, a typical Ferrari car will burn around 1.2 litre per lap.
That’s around 20kWh.
So, to give us an idea, an engine that burns as much as an average Ferrari is equivalent to burning around 500g of CO2 per mile.
So what does this mean for the future of Formula 1?
It’s no secret that Formula 1 is running out of fuel, so it seems obvious that the F1 engines will have to change.
Ferrari’s engine can’t run on hydrogen or electricity, so the only option is to use an energy storage device.
What is this device?
It’s a battery.
How many of them?
In terms of the number of batteries, the battery packs in the F2000 and F3000 cars have a capacity of around 300Wh.
That makes them a little larger than the average F1 battery pack, but the problem is that the battery pack is just one piece of the puzzle.
What can we do with a battery?
The problem with a car battery is that there are a lot more pieces than that, and if we could just find a way to combine the different pieces, we’d be in the business of building an engine from scratch.
That’s what McLaren has been doing for years with the carbon fibre V12 engine, and it’s worked pretty well.
However, in Formula 1, there are so many components to the engine that it can’t be simply combined into one single piece of a new design.
The answer lies in a new kind of battery.
We know how much power an F1 car uses, but how does that translate into the amount of energy stored in a car?
According to F1 data, the average fuel consumption in F1 is 1.1kWh per lap, but we know that an F2000 engine consumes around 4.3kWh and an F3000 engine consumes almost 7.6kWh, so we know there’s a lot going on.
What’s the answer?
The obvious answer is to build an energy density that’s far higher than what you would normally find in an F-Series car.
This is the first step, but there are other steps that we don’t need to worry about.
For example, the car doesn’t need fuel to run, so there’s nothing that we need to store.
If we could replace the fuel cells with batteries that store energy as heat, the fuel efficiency would go up, and we could even use the extra fuel to improve the car’s aerodynamics.
Of course, there’s still the question of how to make it work in F-Prix, but with the amount that we know about the way the engines are designed and built, it’s not too hard to figure out how the technology works.
And we can look forward to a whole new generation of cars with an electric drivetrain, as the technology for electric cars is progressing at a phenomenal rate.
And, in a way, that’s the beauty of electric cars.
The powertrain that we’re all used to today is going to change the world.
Ferraris team boss Luca di Montezemolo has already said that they plan to use the technology of the V12 in Formula One, and there’s plenty of evidence that the future looks bright.
In a year that saw a few notable incidents involving the use of an electric motor in F4, Formula One’s energy recovery technology is poised to revolutionise the sport.
What do you think?
Should we all get behind the electric car?
Should we worry about how fast the batteries will get us?
Let us know what you think in the comments below.