Mosley wants standardised F1 cars

Posted on | Author Keith Collantine

Max Mosley, FIA Gala, 2006Max Mosley’s words highlighted in bold in the FIA president’s latest letter to the teams spells out his position on green technologies, entertainment and costs as plainly as possible:

All items on the cars which are not known, visible and understood by the public should be standardised and manufactured at minimal cost.

The technical contest should be limited to items which are visible, understood and potentially useful – e.g. the Kinetic Energy Recovery System

He wants to massively reduce the technical freedom of car designers, focus public attention on green technologies such as KERS, and improve racing in F1.

Mosley’s words are likely to anger purists who don’t want to see F1 become yet another racing series where all the cars are the same, like A1 Grand Prix, Champ Car and the like.

But he raises an interesting point. It is not currently the case that every car on the grid is 100% manufactured by their respective teams. Brakes, for example, are manufactured by specialist companies such as Carbone Industries and Hitco.

Would F1’s unique appeal really be diluted if the same principle were extended to other components on the cars?

I’m playing devil’s advocate here a little. I don’t want to see F1 become a series where every team collects a pair of identical chassis from the FIA, paints it in their colours and go racing.

And I find Mosley’s approach to the green issue baffling. I agree that it’s in the long-term interests of F1 to incorporate greener technologies (and there are plenty of people who won’t even concede that point).

But I fail to see why they much be forced into a single specified route, Mosley’s solution of smaller engines twinned with KERS. Why not let them also develop hydrogen engines, electric engines and other alternatives?

Mosley, meanwhile, is clearly frustrated at the teams fighting for a bigger slice of F1’s revenues and arguing over the monies given to teams that do not build their own cars (legal in F1 from 2008) while trying to push back the introduction of KERS as late as possible:

Until the basic problem of costs has been resolved, time should not be wasted discussing how the FOM money is to be distributed. It is a secondary matter. The same applies to debating the level of technical co-operation allowed between teams.

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