Third Manufacturer Wants F1 Alternative Engine Deal


According to this exclusive report, you can now add Mecachrome to the ever-expanding list of companies who are bidding for and “submitting tenders” to build the next generation of “low tech”, non-hybrid F1 engines.

When the FIA, led by president Jean Todt, forced hybrid technology onto F1 teams a few years ago, the justification was that the technology would make F1 cars seem more relevant to manufacturers’ road cars and lure more OEMs into the sport. Since then, Toyota and BMW have both left the series, and the only new entrant, Honda, is finding it difficult enough to support one team, let alone several. To combat the engine “shortage” and rising costs of KERS and ERS technology, the powers that be in Formula 1 announced that they would look into adopting an all-new “alternative” engine … assuming that anyone was interested in building it, of course.

You can almost imagine the embarrassed looks being issued across the meeting tables at the FIA offices, can’t you? Mecachrome, of course, were the shop responsible for the Renault-branded engines that powered Red Bull to four consecutive drivers’ and constructors’ double-championships in 2010, 2011, 2012, and 2013, as well as Williams’ and Bennettons’ dominant, championship-winning cars in the 90s. As such, you can probably expect that they have a few ideas.


Michael Schumacher’s Mecachrome-built Benetton Renault

1993 German Grand Prix. Hockenheim, Germany. 23-25 July 1993. Michael Schumacher (Benetton B193B Ford) 2nd position. Ref-93 GER 05. World Copyright - LAT Photographic

The question now, of course, is whether Mecachrome, Ilmor (who have a history with both Chevrolet and Mercedes-Benz), or AER will get the nod. The even bigger, unanswered question, however, remains: with all this interest in an alternative engine, is it time to admit the hybrid solution was wrong for F1 in the first place?

We have a comments section, you have opinions. You know what to do, guys.


Source | Images: Motorsport.

Jo Borrás

I've been in the auto industry 1997, and write for a number of blogs in the IM network. You can also find me on Twitter, at my Volvo fansite, out on two wheels, or chasing my kids around Oak Park, IL.