Manufacturers to drop support for 2013 engines

By on Friday, May 20, 2011

May 20 (GMM) The 2013 engine rules are on the cusp of being scrapped.

In interviews with Blick and Auto Motor und Sport this week, F1 chief executive Bernie Ecclestone slammed the four-cylinder turbo formula as "a joke".

He is backed by Ferrari, and F1's other engine manufacturers are now set to join the same argument about sticking with the current 2.4 litre V8s beyond next season.

FIA president Jean Todt has committed to meeting with the engine manufacturers in Barcelona on Saturday, and according to Ecclestone their message should be clear.

"The FIA made its decision based on false assumptions, without considering the side effects," said the 80-year-old.

"The manufacturers and the teams need to go to the FIA and say they have thought about it and concluded that while the decision seemed right then, from today's perspective it is wrong," added Ecclestone.

Auto Motor und Sport said the manufacturers' argument to Todt will be simple: that they cannot afford to build competitive four-cylinder turbos by 2013.

Even Mercedes has reportedly changed its position, concerned that with Renault not committing to F1 for the long term, it may have to supply more customer teams.

"We cannot do that," said Norbert Haug. "We support the four cylinder only if there is a guarantee that the costs will be reduced by 30 per cent over a period of five years."

Meanwhile, paddock rumours suggest that Craig Pollock's 'Pure' engine plans for 2013 are part of a political move to prove that the turbo formula can attract new suppliers.

Enticing Honda and Toyota to return, however - or luring the Volkswagen Group - has apparently failed, leaving F1's existing players wondering if it is a good move to throw away the proven V8 formula.

"The question is can we afford such a change?" Renault team boss Eric Boullier told F1's official website.

"All in all it is important that we don't take the wrong decision in terms of the sport's fans and its future," he said.

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