2013 F1 season
Lotus technical director James Allison says the team is not concerned that Renault’s request to use revised engine maps for 2013 was turned down by the FIA.
Speaking to media during testing at the Circuit de Catalunya last week Allison said the team had discovered in testing there was no gain to be had from the engime map:
“We’re using the same map as we’ve been using all winter testing which is the same we’ve been using since Korea last year when we introduced our Coanda exhaust,” he said.
“You have a set of rules, you want to find out exactly where the boundary of those rules are and you do that by asking questions and probing away. So we were asking questions to the FIA about what’s possible while simultaneously trying what we asked for on the track.
“By the time the FIA had looked at it and said ‘no, you can’t do that’ we’d also found out we didn’t much like it when we ran it. So in the end it wasn’t much of a story, really.”
Allison denied the Lotus’s exhaust had been designed specifically to take advantage of the now-outlawed maps: “All of those Coanda exhausts are trying to blow the floor. Much more weakly than you could manage in 2011 but they try to blow the floor.”
“If there were no rules about how you operate the engine you’d operate the engines like we did in 2011 – using them like elaborate air pumps. So you would like to get the throttles as open as possible for any given power setting because that delivers more energy to where you would like to on the floor. But there’s a set of rules establishing how far you can push that, and that’s all we’re talking about.”
“They all do the same thing. They all try to get high-energy air down to the gap between the tyre and the floor. There’s multiple ways of skinning the cat but all of them try to do that, they all try to get the same flow structure set up via the floor.
“And the more energy you can deliver to that area that better, and all will benefit equally. And in fact everyone is designing their floor to maximise the amount of downforce per unit of energy delivered by the exhaust. If you’re delivering more units of energy you’ll get more downforce, irrespective of the flavour of Coanda system.”
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Image © Lotus/LAT