Electrification of Formula 1 has been a very controversial topic for a long time. Since F1 introduced V6 turbo hybrid engines back in 2014, fans and some drivers have shown their disagreement with those power units since the noise that V12s, V10s and V8 have cannot compare to the noise V6s have.
In the last few days, this topic has been part of a lot of conversations since Alejandro Agag, Formula E’s CEO, made some statements in which he said that Formula 1 and Formula E could merge in the future. With the fact that a lot of European governments have decided that cars with internal combustion engine will be reduced in their countries, electrification seems like a highly likely option for F1. Nevertheless, Alain Prost has said in an interview with “L’Equipe” that he is against this future for Formula 1.
The main argument that Prost said that having electrical cars would mean that there will be much less room of technical improvement. Nowadays, we can see how the teams improve their power units in order to gain some more horsepower and, if we compare to Formula E, they cannot do that since their motors are completely electrical and they cannot change anything to them, in the other hand, we might see some close racing, just like Formula E, because all the cars must have exactly the same motor.
“Now, only 30 litres are consumed by 100 kilometres to race at 300 km/h. And we are working in the periphery, to ensure that races leave less carbon footprints, to reduce waste, etc.” Commented Prost. The Frenchman also noted that the highest motorsport category needs permanent innovation and that is why he gave an example of how F1 and the FIA have already been working in order to reduce their cars’ carbon emissions,
“Although our complex hybrid engines are helping manufacturers to innovate in their standard and road cars. F1 must adapt to what the cars of the future will be like if we want F1 to still be a sport.” Expressed ‘The Professor’. Since F1 introduced hybrid engines in 2014, road cars manufacturers have been looking closely to F1 in order to develop and innovate their cars as the future seems to be with electrical cars.
“Pure electric – battery powered – may not be the future of Formula 1, in my opinion. Hydrogen might be an option, but it is an innovative energy that will cost dearly. We must reflect on it.” The Frenchman proposed.
Let’s remember about the announcement F1 made concerning a possible change of engines in 2026. Nevertheless, in 2022 we will see new technical regulations so there might be some close racing, but does electrification is the best option for F1?