As the Formula 1 season draws near, I believe it is important to touch on an issue of prime concern- the downsizing of V8 engine. To put it in other words, we would be seeing, or rather hearing the V8s for the last time! The V8 which has been there for eight long years will have its last laugh this season, a decision made by the World Motor Sport Council (WMSC). Let me go back in time a bit and try putting things in perspective.
V10s were used earlier in 2005, producing about 1000bhp which could touch top speeds of 370kmph. However, FIA (Federation Internationale del’ Automobile) decided in 2006, to bring in the less powerful V8s. These could produce about 750bhp. A period of engine modification was allowed; where teams improved their engine’s output even higher than what was desired. So, in 2009 the revolution limit was brought down from 19,000rpm to 18,000. Then came the Kinetic Energy Recovery System (KERS) in 2009 which has been a part of F1 since then. But then, in 2011 arose the idea of doing away with the V8s and the V6 was given the green signal.
The downsizing however would have minimal effect on the car’s speed or performance, thanks to turbo charging mechanism being incorporated once again. Apart from direct injection, another Energy Recovery System (ERS) is adopted, which apart from using the kinetic energy, would also utilize the power generated while braking and exhaust gases.
I sure am sounding optimistic, but let me remind you, performance and speed apart, F1 is also about the sonorous loud whiny noise of cars speeding by-something we associate with Formula 1! Will that be same with the onslaught of V6s? I have my doubts!