F1, all the news 2026: synthetic gasoline, more? electric and … less innovation?

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The FIA ​​World Council has established the key points of the engines of the power units that from 2026 will project the cars of Formula 1 from curb to curb. A long-awaited resolution, both by enthusiasts and professionals, called to design the next powertrains (the current ones are frozen until 2026), and by interested spectators, see Porsche that aims to enter the & quot; circus & quot; taking over 50% of Red Bull Racing.

And according to some observers, the new pillars of Formula 1 in 2026, with greater standardization of components, would go precisely in favor of the entry of Porsche (and Audi, it has been said in the past), and of an increasingly more competition; based on the show and less on the principle & quot; from the track to the road & quot; which has always permeated the highest expression of world sports motoring.

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The imposition of the budget cap – the spending limit – also for motorists , and of power units more ; similar to each other, more homologated and less innovative than in the past, it would betray the spirit that has always characterized F1, that of a competition totally devoted to stimulating experimentation and improvement on the track of the innovations to be introduced on everyday cars. But anyway, the Formula 1 board has decided to align with the needs of the moment and change to promote research on the front of synthetic fuels , the so-called e-fuels of derivation chemical and non-fossil.

POWER UNIT 2026, GREEN REVOLUTION

Fossil fuels banned and already; consumption

Increasing electrification and increased sensitivity; towards environmental issues led the FIA ​​Council to put fuel and consumption at the center of the cars of the near future. The units & agrave; internal combustion or ICE, as we have anticipated, will use synthetic fuels of chemical and non-fossil origin, and the elements that will constitute the lifeblood of the engines must be totally sustainable, in line with the F1 net zero objectives.

Not only that, because & eacute; we expect a reduction in consumption: from the 160 kg used in 2013 to complete a Grand Prix it & egrave; passed to 100 kg in 2020, but from 2026 F1 hopes that 70 kg of & quot; clean & quot; fuel will suffice, despite the removal of the capacity limit; of the tank. Furthermore, there will be the obligation to recycle batteries and the precious elements of the MGU-K at the end of their life. F1 wants to show that internal combustion engines can play an active role in the ecological transition and that electric cannot; be the only viable solution, at least in the immediate future.

Year zero for PUs: almost 50% of the power will be; electric

Of the current power units from 2026 onwards, in fact, only architecture will remain. It will be once again of 1.6-liter turbo internal combustion (ICE) engines with six cylinders in V with cylinder banks of 90 & deg ;, but it will change; the distribution of the power between that generated by combustion and that coming instead from the unit & agrave; electric : 400 kW (544 hp) for the ICE, 350 kW (476 hp) for the ERS from the 120 kW (163 hp) of the current power units (here the summary video made by the F1 board)./p>

F1 2026 will depend & agrave; more and more; from electrons, favoring research on an area, that of electrification, which can also be spent on everyday roads. MGU-K confirmed (and enhanced), while MGU-H & egrave; to greetings due to the scarce possibilities; of transfer to series production for costs and complexity: on teams and pilots alegger & agrave; the spectrum of turbo lag as on the cars of the 80s, the delay between the pressure on the accelerator and the entry of the turbo at full speed, a not negligible problem for current powers at stake that will go managed in some way.

MGU-K : the Motor Generator Unit – Kinetic transforms the kinetic energy that would otherwise be dispersed by the braking system in the form of heat into electrical energy to be stored in the car's batteries, thus to provide extra (electrical) power to that coming from the unit & agrave; internal combustion (ICE)

MGU-H : the Motor Generator Unit – Heat transforms the excess kinetic energy generated by the turbine into electrical energy to be returned to the turbine itself in the first phase of acceleration, thus; to limit or reset the turbo lag (or turbo delay) bringing the turbine to the ideal rotation speed in the shortest possible time to provide the maximum contribution to the thrust of the single-seater.

Budget cap also for PUs and extensive use of common parts

On the financial side, news is expected; equally important. The budget cap, the budget cap that the teams must undergo from this year to complete the season, from 2026 will concern; also the engines, with the aim of cutting costs (it is said of half) and allowing so; a more competition equitable among teams with different abilities of expenditure. New limits also for the components that the teams can replace within a season without incurring penalties, while the power units granted will remain three for each car.

The circus ensures that despite the budget cap the F1 will remain & agrave; an avant-garde technological showcase, but skepticism is not lacking because many components must necessarily be standardized, eliminating research and development: the turbine and the MGU-K will become common parts, but the impression is egrave; that also different distinctive elements of the unit & agrave; thermal through which now (and in the past) the engineers differentiate their proposals favoring innovation.

IN 2023 NEW? ANTI PORPOISING AND PI? SECURITY

Regarding the debated changes to the 2023 technical regulation, pushed by Mercedes and opposed by Ferrari and Red Bull, to eliminate or at least drastically reduce the phenomenon of porpoising (the & quot; hopping & quot; of the single-seaters generated by the & # 39; ground effect, more evident in the straight line) the FIA ​​World Council has decided to:

  • increase the minimum height from the ground of the edges of the floor by 15 mm
  • increase the height of the diffuser throat (what has not yet been communicated, it is said by 10 mm)
  • increase the rigidity of the diffuser edge
  • force the teams to install an additional sensor on the single-seaters to monitor porpoising more effectively; effective.

The technical regulation of 2023 will require & agrave; also a greater resistance to roll-hoops (to be clear, the air intake above the rider's helmet that acts as a roll-bar), which will be modified by the designers in their construction characteristics and which during the homologation they will be subjected to more tests; severe. The crackdown arises from the frightening accident that occurred to the Alfa Romeo driver Guanyu Zhou during the British GP this year, which fortunately is; came out of the cockpit unscathed.

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