March 12, 2014

Horse Power and Fuel Saving.

We're loving these pre season promotional videos.  This one, from Shell, gives a glimpse behind the scenes at the Scuderia, albeit one revealing almost nothing of the new power units.

We don't know how this new formula will play out for the sport but there is no doubt that preparation for it has been, a monumental challenge on the engineering side.

Take for example the latest speculation about some innovative gearbox management at Ferrari.

In testing some have remarked how quiet, compared to other cars, the red cars were in the corner entry phase.  Usually a car braking while approaching a corner will be downshifting through the gears and  computer controlled gearboxes will automatically blip the throttle to match engine revs and smooth the shifts.  Problem is, with this fuel critical formula, any unnecessary throttle action is a no no.
According to Autosprint Ferrari have worked around this by using electrical power from the MGU-K rather than combustion power to match revs on downshifts.  It is a small saving but, considering there might be as many as 70 gearshifts per lap, it adds up over the course of a race.

As with anything there will be pros and cons, less fuel but more stress on electrical components and less power to drive the wheels.

Just another fascinating tidbit to follow.

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