Skip to content

Formula 1 reveals 2021 engine blueprint

F1's engine plans post-2021 outlined with increased noise, reduced costs and possibly new manufacturers on the way...

Carlos Sainz in the Bahrain GP twilight - Picture from Getty Images

Formula 1 and the FIA have revealed details of the 2021 engine plans proposed to the teams.

The plans were revealed at a summit in Paris attended by the sport's governing body, the FIA, F1's owners, Liberty Media, and 'current and potential Formula One manufacturers'.

Although the roadmap outlined contains a commitment to maintaining the road relevancy of F1's power units, an intention to increasing the sound and reducing the cost of the sport's engines has also been confirmed.

Sky F1's Mark Hughes on proposed engine changes
2018 schedule and line-ups
The Formula 1 Gossip Column

As part of the proposals, F1's power units will no longer include the MGU-H component - which recovers heat energy from the turbo - but the MGU-K will be made more powerful.

In a bid to improve the sound of F1 cars, a 3000rpm higher engine running speed range will be introduced. The reduction in volume and pitch of the current era hybrid engine introduced in 2014 has been subject to heavy criticism following the noise of previous V8 and V10 generation engines.

Work will continue for another 12 months on the exact details of the engine specification, with the FIA stating "the design and development of the complete power unit will not be possible until all the information is released at the end of 2018".

Also See:

The statement added: "During the remaining part of 2017 and 2018, the FIA and F1 will also work with the teams to establish power unit test and development restrictions as well as other cost containment measures."

F1's 2021 engine plans at a glance

  • The 2021 power unit to be a 1.6 Litre, V6 Turbo Hybrid
  • 3000rpm higher engine running speed range to improve the sound
  • Prescriptive internal design parameters to restrict development costs and discourage extreme designs and running conditions
  • Removal of the MGU-H
  • More powerful MGU-K with focus on manual driver deployment in race together with option to save up energy over several laps to give a driver controlled tactical element to racing
  • Single turbo with dimensional constraints and weight limits
  • Standard energy store and control electronics
  • High Level of external prescriptive design to give 'Plug-And-Play' engine/chassis/transmission swap capability
  • Intention to investigate tighter fuel regulations and limits on number of fuels used

What's being said
F1 managing director Ross Brawn: "The 2021 power unit is an example of the future way the FIA as regulators, F1 as commercial right holders, the teams and the manufacturers as stakeholders will work together for the common good of the sport. The proposal presented today was the outcome of a series of meetings which took place during 2017 with the current teams participating in the FIA Formula 1 World Championship and the manufacturers who showed their interest to be part of the pinnacle of motor sport.

"Also, we've carefully listened to what the fans think about the current PU and what they would like to see in the near future with the objective to define a set of regulations which will provide a powertrain that is simpler, cheaper and noisier and will create the conditions to facilitate new manufacturers to enter Formula 1 as powertrain suppliers and to reach a more levelled field in the sport.

"The new F1 has the target to be the world's leading global sports competition married to state of the art technology. To excite, engage, and awe fans of all ages but to do so in a sustainable manner. We believe that the future power unit will achieve this."

KUALA LUMPUR, MALAYSIA - SEPTEMBER 29: Ferrari Team Principal Maurizio Arrivabene talks with Mercedes GP Executive Director Toto Wolff and Mercedes GP non-

Mercedes team boss Toto Wolff told Auto Motor und Sport: "Certain things are right, but it's not quite there. It is a vision and not yet a regulation. And it's only their [FIA and FOM] vision and not the manufacturer's.

"It is important to define all together what Formula 1 should be in 2021, not just from the point of view of the engine. What we have is the starting point of a dialogue rather than something we have agreed to.

"The concept sounds similar to what we have now. But it means a completely new development that will mean we are working on two engines at the same time between 2018 and 2020.

"I just want to make it clear that there are different opinions. It was a presentation by the F1 management, not the manufacturer. We will now wait and see what will be put on the table next week and start a dialogue from there."

The other nine teams are yet to formally comment.

Around Sky