Fans will ‘get used to sound of new engines’ – teams

2014 Australian Grand Prix

Adrian Sutil, Sauber, Albert Park, 2014F1 team principals believe fans will quickly adjust to the sound of the new Formula One engines.

The first practice sessions featuring the new V6 turbo engines received mixed responses from fans at the track in Melbourne about how the sound of Formula One has changed.

However team principals hold the view that the new sound will gain acceptance.

“Personally I like the sound of the engines,” said Williams deputy team principal Claire Williams.

“But then I love Formula One and I love watching car go round a race track. I think people pretty quickly get used to what Formula One engine sound like. We’ve had so many changes over so many decades of motor racing and you very quickly forget what a previous engine sounds like.”

“I think people just want to see a good race on Sunday and I thin as long as we can deliver that then I think that any issues or contentious conversations around that may fade away.”

Ferrari team principal Stefano Domenicali agreed with the views put forward by Williams and Mercedes’ motorsport chief Toto Wolff.

Wolff said: “If you like sound of engines let’s go back to V10 and V12s, let’s not do any hybrid. This is a modern technology, this is how road cars go, downsizing is the motto and I think we just accept that the formula has changed.”

“These cars are going to go quicker in a couple of races than the old ones. You’re going to get used to the sounds and I promise next year around you will not notice and not remember any difference any more.”

2014 Australian Grand Prix

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100 comments on Fans will ‘get used to sound of new engines’ – teams

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  1. Lucas Wilson (@full-throttle-f1) said on 14th March 2014, 8:22

    I really like the sound :-)

    *Preparing for hate*

    • *Random hate directed towards Lucas Wilson*

    • dragoll (@dragoll) said on 14th March 2014, 9:23

      @full-throttle-f1 I was there today and there was a noticeable difference in the sound. It was remarkably different that some of the guys I was with who are regulars each year commented on how the cars are quieter. Then we had confirmation, they did a speed comparison and a 2013 Spec Red Bull with V8 engine roared to life and stormed around the track confirming that this years V6’s are quieter and by a margin.

      Personally it will not detract from why I watch F1 for, and if I’m honest, I was more comfortable at the track this year without needing ear plugs, and having normal conversations while cars were whizzing past.

    • TMF (@tmf42) said on 14th March 2014, 10:25

      I like the sound too. though I think they still need to tune the broadcast a bit – if they increase volume and filter less of the lower frequencies then it could also sound pretty cool on TV.

    • OneBHK (@onebhk) said on 14th March 2014, 12:39

      @full-throttle-f1

      *Preparing for hate*

      I think that itself sums up the general consensus

    • F1 cars sound crap and slow.because they are crap and slow.ever since the slow fast cars down cap because redbull.silent couldn’t keep up

    • I like it too if I could catch it at home that would be great.

      What I hate is people saying that F1 should go green and should invest in new technology, I agree with the evolution, having direct injection is a no brainer, having turbos is a no brainer but having 100kg of ballast isn’t nor is having archaic suspension and not being able to cover the wheels. If I were a purist I would go further and say that racing is racing it has nothing to do with being green and the talk would end there, but as you know it is the marketing side that has overlapped to racing, tagging engines with brand names wasn’t enough so creating the illusion that your road car engine is just as like an F1 engine works better even when that is completely false. Heidfeld said recently F1 cars or any racing car is faster as light as it is, it’s playing with efficiency and 100 kgs of weight for 160 bhp for 33 seconds is not worth it.

      • Desmond Hadden said on 18th March 2014, 19:57

        This, so much this, mirrors my sentiment exactly. F1 is the ONLY sport I watch and this is a horrible horrible change for the worse, I know its a longshot but if enough folks back away from the sport maybe they will think of reverting back to the v8s (I’d accept that!) let alone v10s and v12s.

        I get the need to evolve and change with the times etc, but this is such a small sliver of consumption that we’re affecting at such great cost. The entire F1 ecosystem of flying hundreds of tons of personnel, material, fuel etc around the globe is the REAL resource hog, though fixing it wouldnt yield the PR results that engine changes do. This is a very dark time for the sport, I hope its only temporary

        • Bruce Johne said on 18th March 2014, 22:26

          I couldn’t agree more. I will not spend the money to go half way around the world to watch a field full of Tesla’s (nothing against Tesla.) Just leave some things alone. F1 is a sacred shrine of speed AND noise. Imagine going to a Buddhist temple without experiencing the continuous clouds of incense smoke. How about incense that spews scented steam. Now there’s an idea

    • medman (@medman) said on 15th March 2014, 16:41

      Formula 1 is headed down the wrong path, in my humble opinion. I don’t mind changes, but the changes made have rendered the cars limp and the drivers impotent. The ridiculous tire situation from last year turned the drivers into the world’s most highly paid babysitters, and the saving of fuel instead of pushing hard to get an advantage is a slap in the face to racing fans everywhere. Saving fuel. What a joke. To top it all off, the v6 turbos sound uninspiring, and quite bland, at least on TV. I have a nice a/v setup and always look forward to turning up the volume to enjoy the sounds of F1, and what I heard made me sick, and sad. Formula 1 engines now produce a sound that is far less impressive than those found in nascar, indycar, motogp, you name it, it sounds better than F1. Where is this sport going? What a disappointment. I think the season will be interesting, and I am glad to see new names and teams getting an opportunity to compete for wins, podiums, and points, but isn’t there a way to achieve this level of competition without neutering both the cars and the drivers?

    • Jay Bee said on 17th March 2014, 23:28

      Yep, that’s why we spent $10,000 to fly half way round the world to see “whizzing” slow cars. Give me a break. We were on the start/finish line 6 rows up. It sucked! Ricardo got screwed and the whole thing is a farce. We won’t be back.

    • The f1 cars sounded like a honda hybred with a 3inch exhaust only 25% per cent of the world think this carbon pollution crap is true and 1.or 2% of them like f1 WHY wreack it for the rest of us !! I will never pay to go again to the f1 unless someone wakes up and fixes this .CLIPSAL 500 is better X f1. race GOLD COAST is better X INDIE CAR race .. f1 your turning to boring racing . bye bye aussies WE LIKE V8S … V10S.. V12S….!!!!

  2. Proesterchen (@proesterchen) said on 14th March 2014, 8:27

    What sound? Was there sound?

    • Prof Kirk (@prof-kirk) said on 14th March 2014, 11:07

      I didn’t expect to see Formula E’s at Melbourne so soon either

    • Cole (@cole) said on 14th March 2014, 12:05

      I see Bernie running down all garages and providing SoundRace to every team!

    • Drexel said on 18th March 2014, 2:40

      F1 lost its soul(db) in 2014, plain and simple.

      That was the last live race I’d ever go to and it is not what I paid for. Why would I pay good money for a ticket and experience exactly zero atmosphere and a miniscule snippet of the track as these sewing machines quietly zip past? This is not F1. This is however the biggest mess in the history of F1.

      Anyone thinking fans will get used to this sound and will have forgotten what the cars sound like pre 2014 are seriously delusional. As a long time fan the first time I went to F1 stood out for one reason and one reason alone, the incredible sound of those machines. Anybody who watches F1 live will know what I’m talking about and with that gone why wouldn’t I just watch it on TV and get great coverage of what’s actually happening at any given moment? Take the sound away and there is absolutely no need to be trackside as an F1 fan.

      • bryan said on 19th March 2014, 23:36

        exactly, what sound… a profound joke, as David C said on ITV (former F1 driver) “sounds like a massey ferguson (tractor) … if u have ever been to a race these cars scream and the sound hits you with an experience you will never forget. now, they are just a joke!

        • bryan said on 19th March 2014, 23:42

          even Bernie E has commented on how bad the sound was, he said changes are coming in the next few races, the AUS grand prix has threated a breach of contract (law suit) because they felt they will loose ticket sales because of the change and this was not what they expected… F1 has to learn to leave things alone, they are always changing things and trying to manipulate placement.. its down hill from whey the put DRS in play… :(

  3. Peter said on 14th March 2014, 8:38

    Sat at turn 1 today, didn’t need ear plugs at all. Much quieter. On the straights they are quite loud. (and actually sound good)

    One mistake they made today was doing the ultimate speed test, where they pitted a C63 AMG, V8 Supercar and RB7 in a handicapped race together.

    You notice the noise difference big time when they run back to back…

  4. gruntr18 (@gruntr18) said on 14th March 2014, 8:41

    Vijay Mallya certainly didnt agree, did anyone see him during FP2? He said something along the lines of “This is not F1, we must go back” while pulling down his headseat on the pit wall as a car went by.

    • ivz (@ivz) said on 14th March 2014, 8:59

      He said:
      “The noise of Formula 1 is gone!! We need that Formula 1 noise!”
      This was also said with hand gestures lol.
      But he is right! The sound is no longer special, it’s just a race car sound. And there are now many other race cars (even road cars) that sound better!

    • OneBHK (@onebhk) said on 14th March 2014, 9:49

      Have to give it to Vijay this time for speaking his mind, not like Wollf who seems to force the sound on the fans…

  5. gwenouille (@gwenouille) said on 14th March 2014, 8:48

    I just can’t understand why quieter is worse.
    To me, the new sound is great. It is in fact quieter, which means people on site may well stop using earplugs, so they will hear more, much more !
    We TV viewers may well hear the crowd better, the radio, the tyres, the mechanics…

    And any fat, deep noise is better than a blunt squeal in my book. I am all for it.

  6. stefano (@alfa145) said on 14th March 2014, 8:48

    Sadly that’s not the right way of doing things. People get used to what they don’t like when they have to deal with it no matter what, so it happens for bad things like you get used to be poor, or you get used to stay in prison. I’m exaggerating here to prove the point: saying people will get used to new sound is an implicit (but not so much) admission that the sound, for acceptable and pretty nice that it may be, is not as exciting as it has been in the past. So, as far as I’m ok to say that the sound is not that bad, it’s legit to say that this is clearly a step backward, because being this F1, where the extreme is the normality, an acceptable sound is actually not enough. I’m sorry to say that, love the sport viscerally, but you have to admit this new sound doesn’t vibrate your backbone. Getting used to it will not mean it has been a success.

  7. Slava (@slava) said on 14th March 2014, 8:49

    I’ve got used to it by the end of the 2nd session. But nevertheless, if a commetator is silent before we could hear a roar. Now even in breaking zones i do not hear anything. Maybe they should use more sensitive microphones.

  8. claudioff (@claudioff) said on 14th March 2014, 8:50

    Next time I attend to a rock concert I will complain about the musicians that didn’t run from one side to the other of the stage fast enough. I also want a lot of discussions about who is faster, Bono or Mick Jagger? oh, and a lot of nostalgia also about the good times when Robert Plant crossed the stage carring two guitars like a rocket!

  9. monaco73 said on 14th March 2014, 8:52

    Well, this will take some getting used to. It doesn’t sound like the pinnacle of motorsport we are so fond of hearing about, unfortunately. More like GP2 or 3 or DTM. Love the turbo-whine in the corners and on lift-off, but otherwise, it sounds similar to many other series now, whereas before it was distinct.

  10. Tomsk (@tomsk) said on 14th March 2014, 9:00


    “Noise is wasted energy”! So why should a new F1 motor unit, designed to be energy efficient, make noise. Change happens…


    says Alex Wurz, driver of the loudest of the LMP1 cars…

    I like them, particularly the Ferrari; I love the fact I can tell them apart, and all the extra things I’m hearing now from tyres, turbos and team radio. I just wish that prattling, matey commentator would shut his face.

  11. greg-c said on 14th March 2014, 9:05

    Love the sound of the williams on board shots. So much boost going in those little engines .

  12. The Blade Runner (@thebladerunner) said on 14th March 2014, 9:06

    I’m going to reserve judgement until I get to hear a race first-hand (Catalunya in May). As @gwenouille says, ironically, by not wearing ear plugs, you may get to hear more “noise” than before.

    I can see why many are unhappy with the change though, especially those that work in F1. I was at a McLaren event in late 2012 and their marketing guy described his role: “Basically” he said, “we sell noise!” Not any more…

    • Drexel said on 18th March 2014, 3:07

      “I’m going to reserve judgement until I get to hear a race first-hand (Catalunya in May). As @gwenouille says, ironically, by not wearing ear plugs, you may get to hear more “noise” than before.”

      Trust me, you wont! My road car sounds more hostile than these things do live…..

  13. DR.Psyho (@dr-psyho) said on 14th March 2014, 9:06

    we must….sound is very very bad…now i must watch some races with V10 or V8 engine to recover my ears :)

  14. Roald (@roald) said on 14th March 2014, 9:08

    It’s strange that people seem to lobby for less restrictions in the regulationbook almost constantly, while disagreeing with the use of smaller capacity turbo engines. Does anyone honestly think that if manufacturers could design whatever kind of engine they wanted they would opt for naturally-aspirated V10-engines? The only reason we had the V8 engines was BECAUSE of tight regulations. On one hand everyone hates the fact that the governing bodies of the sport do anything they can to “improve the show”, on the other hand these new, much more exciting engines are frowned upon because they do not produce enough noise.

    They’re fine, they’re fast, they’re 21st century, they’re Formula 1. Innovation, speed and technique should define what makes something Formule 1 or not, not the amount of noise coming from it.

    • Haka said on 14th March 2014, 12:29

      What would happen if engines were totally unrestricted?

      Probably no energy recovery systems and biggish V12 with turbo(s)? There would be a limit when the bigger engine would start to slow the car down more in the corners than help in the straights but where that limit is?

  15. Toxic (@toxic) said on 14th March 2014, 9:13

    I don’t care about the sound. Actually, being at the races I didn’t like to wear the earplugs which is a necessity in Melbourne when you’re really close to the track.
    The racing is the only thing I care. As long as it’s good and the drivers needs to actually drive the car that is not ‘on rails’, I’ll be happy.

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