Fry: F1 Should Go Green

BAR Honda CEO Nick Fry says Formula 1 should prepare the ground for a radical switch to energy-efficient and environmentally friendly cars in the next few years. Fry believes that F1 manufacturers are well placed to deliver environmental goals because maximizing efficiency within a given set of rules is their stock in trade. Moreover, he claims F1's massive investment in research could have a significant payoff for the car industry as a whole.

"It's almost ironic: The specific area where development in Formula 1 will influence road cars is in efficiency and environmental issues," Fry was quoted as saying by news agency Reuters. "Formula 1 is all about efficiency, about getting the maximum from what you can do within the rules."

Fry cited fuel consumption a case in point: "If you can go that one extra lap, if you can use less fuel so you have a lighter car, then you will have a significant advantage. By the end of the season, the difference between the top teams was 20 horsepower out of more than 900. If you could go that extra lap on the equivalent fuel load or if you could start the car five or 10 kilos lighter that's a bigger advantage [than speed]."

Fry even floated the idea of F1 running a parallel class for hybrid cars, which are gaining popularity among ordinary motorists.

"Maybe Formula 1 in five years' time or more should have a special formula for hybrid vehicles," he said. "If in 10 years' time because of environmental reasons the key thing of interest to road car customers is a hybrid formula [then] I don't see why Formula 1 shouldn't migrate in that direction. It should be a mirror of what's happening in the real world. It shouldn't be an island. We might have Formula 1 develop into something with two classes within it. The final migration point might be something completely different. My personal feeling is that it should be something different. It should move with the times." [][/url ]

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