The 2014 season of Formula 1 racing begins this weekend in Australia. For many, it’ll be the first time they’ve heard the new, turbocharged V6 engines that have replaced last year’s high-revving and naturally-aspirated V8s- and they may be surprised once they hear the new cars. Make no mistake, then: the sound of the sport is radically different from last year.
To some, the sounds of the new Formula 1 hybrid race cars sounds like breathing. Whatever they sound like to you, there is no denying that the new cars have a much deeper exhaust rumble than their obsolete V8 counterparts. They also deliver significantly more torque at lower RPM, making this year’s cars much more sensitive on corner exits and minimizing the effect of aerodynamic downforce on overall lap times- a fact that is believed to favor the powerful Mercedes-engined teams to the detriment of the “finesse” Renault power unit driven teams.
We covered all of that in our 2014 Formula 1 season preview article, however. For now, check out this video from closed pre-season testing earlier this year, and pay attention to that high-pitched whine you hear when the drivers lift into the corner. That’s turbo whine, and it will define this new era of open wheel racing. Enjoy!