F1: Simple solution to make F1 cars light – Allison (won’t work)

(GMM) One F1 technical guru has a simple solution to get the hefty weight of Formula 1 cars down – just announce it.

FIA president Mohammed Ben Sulayem and F1 CEO Stefano Domenicali agree that today’s 800kg cars – some couple of hundred kilos heavier than a couple of decades ago – are far too cumbersome.

Fernando Alonso, however, thinks making the cars lighter will not be easy.

“The hybrid engines will always be heavier than the normal engines and the safety on these cars is a lot higher as well,” he said.

Fellow champion Lewis Hamilton commented: “Our wheels this year are a ridiculous weight. And there’s just no need.”

But generally, Alonso is correct about the heavier safety features of the cars and the hybrid power units – with the latter only going to get even heavier with the 2026 rules.

Pierre Wache, technical boss at Red Bull, admits that the 2026 engines will be “massively heavier” than the already hefty current power units. [Editor’s Note: This is what happens when you try to appease the tree-huggers]

Pierre Wache, Chief Engineer of Performance Engineering at Red Bull Racing, Dan Fallows, Technical Director of Aston Martin F1 and James Allison, Technical Director at Mercedes GP attend the Team Principals Press Conference during practice ahead of the F1 Grand Prix of Canada at Circuit Gilles Villeneuve on June 16, 2023 in Montreal, Quebec. (Photo by Dan Istitene/Getty Images) // Getty Images / Red Bull Content Pool /

James Allison, the returned Mercedes technical director, admits that writing detailed technical regulations for 2026 that lead to lighter cars will be “particularly tricky”.

However, he has a simple solution for that.

“The way to make them lighter, I think, is to lower the weight limit and make it our problem,” said Allison. “If cars are over the limit, then it forces us all to make some fairly difficult decisions about what we put in our cars and what we don’t.

“But not everyone agrees with that point of view,” he admitted. “But I think that’s the most guaranteed way to put downward pressure on the weight of the car.” [Editor’s Note: Will not work given the safety requirements and the FIA wanting to appease the tree-huggers as this requires the cars to carry a heavy battery.]

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