Mosley wants standardised F1 cars

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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23 comments on Mosley wants standardised F1 cars

  1. Dan: By resemblance I don’t mean a physical one. What I mean is (a) something that the manufacturers can point to and say is a tangible benefit and (b) something an average person can relate to. If you sincerely believe F1 is doing well in terms of attendance and viewership, you are mistaken. If/when the manufacters start to balk at the costs… then the feces hits the impeller.

    The races are boring. F1 is boring if one is not a tech-head/geek. The costs are high.
    Whomever does not realize that this is a dangerous situation is does not live in the real world.

    Max is a moron. However, the team bosses aren’t acting.

  2. Conspiricy theory alert.

    But in the last few years Max has had trouble convincing the teams to cut costs. The main team which has been against him is McLaren who have often stated that they should be free to spend more money than others (including them refusing to put money into Paul Stoddard’s fighting fund for small teams). Ferrari have been bad too, but McLaren have been a key thorn in Max’s side over cost reduction.

    Perhaps Max felt that it would be a good idea to make McLaren a hell of a lot poorer somehow and then push for his cost reductions?

  3. Maybe all the cars in the parade can be RED and Schumacher can come back and lead them around the track-that should put a smile on Max AND Bernie’s faces.

  4. Simon said on 6th October 2007, 16:46

    If the RED team think it’s agood idea then so wil Max. I imagine he has asked for their opinion already. Bernie probably does want it to be a bit more interesting so that his bank balance can continue to grow, through more & more TV sales.

  5. Max’s problem is that he has to have both a driver’s championship and a manufacturer’s championship in the same series. It can’t be done for one without being unfair to the other. If you want to find the best driver, you have to have the cars be all identical. If you want to find the best manufacturer, you have to make the driver irrelevant.

    As a techno-geek, I don’t really care about drivers. We have pilotless airplanes killing terrorists in arabia, why not have driverless cars? F1 manufacturing rules should be like FIA land speed rules, i.e. none! Just go as fast as possible around the course for 90 minutes. With the driver out of the car, there would be no need for all those cumbersome safety regulations, either. To make things a little more competitive, I would require the telemetry to be open, with published protocols and error protection but no encryption allowed.

  6. machine steve said on 14th October 2007, 13:22

    > That is perhaps the most childish thing I’ve ever read on an F1 forum, and that’s saying something.

    F1 is going to need to be green of die – simple.

    To make F1 green simply limit the BHP of petrol combustion engines and delimit the BHP of alternative energy systems. A re-chargable F1 car with zero emissions and unlimited BHP up against a severly limited petrol engine and Ron Dennis will be wearing tie dye and sandals in a flash.

  7. Re: Eric M.

    The new name will be “Formula Universe” or FU.

  8. brian Morrell said on 19th October 2007, 10:29

    Taking into consideration all the comments above relating to Mad Max Mosley and the FIA, then turning to the FIA Presidents outragious personal attack on Jackie Stewart,which smacked of a typical fascist response, (probably inherited) it indicates that the man is not fit for purpose and in relation to the presidents eagernes to supply a minder for Alonso, in response to a request by yet another FIA closet, it suggests the whole FIA board should resign and seek re election, as not content with a personal attack on Stewart, they seem to be quiet happy to besmirch the good name of Mclaren with their actions, which clearly indicates and can have no other meaning than, Mclaren are not to be trusted. Why not retire the whole bunch of vindictive clowns and leave the rules and requirerments of racing to more enlightened and less politicaly motivated individuals. Whatever, “il Ducky Mosley” should resign, he has brought the FIA into disrepute.

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