2014 F1 cars to be all electric in the pitlane
The FIA has released an early summary version of the 2014 technical regulations which, among the more regular information which is widely known, they also outline a few other interesting tidbits.
The regulations confirm the new V6 engine which will operate at 15,000rpm - something which still concerns the majority of race organizers who have threatened to boycott Formula 1 if the noise isn't similar to present.
One of the more interesting bits of information is in relation to the KERS, or ERS as it will be known from 2014. The system will provide a 120kwh boost, double that of the current systems which produces 60kwh. This extra power should amount to about 160bhp for a limited amount of time, though that time limit is yet to be specified.
The 'ERS' unit will also power the car whilst it is in the pitlane at all times. The regulation specifies that "no ignition and no fuel supply to the engine" whilst in the pits, therefore the engine must cut out when the car enters the pits and re-ignite when it leaves.
"5.19 Electric mode: The car must be run in electric mode (no ignition and no fuel supply to the engine) at all times when being driven in the pit lane," reads the release.
To do this, the car must also be startable by the driver, from within the cockpit. This will allow a driver to start the engine if the car stalls without having to be wheeled back to the pits, as is currently the case.
"5.18 Starting the engine: It must be possible for the driver to start the engine at any time when seated normally at the wheel and without any external assistance."
Article 5.19, mentioned above, likely means that every car must be fitted with ERS. If a system fails, it isn't clear how a car can enter the pits as the regulations states 'at any time', though it's likely considerations will be made.
Another change will be to the gearboxes. Currently F1 cars must have no more, or less than seven forward gears. In 2014, that will be increased to no more, or less than eight.
Finally, the cars will have smaller front-wings, returning to those seen in 2008. Currently the front-wing width is the maximum of the car, 1,800mm, that will be restricted to just 1,650mm.