Ferrari expects reliability to be an issue for new 2014 turbo engines

Michele Alboreto's turbo powered Ferrari expires in the pitlane during the 1985 British GP

Michele Alboreto’s turbo powered Ferrari expires in the pitlane during the 1985 British GP

Ferrari believe that reliability will be a major factor next year, particularly during the early phase of the season, when Formula 1 changes to new V6 turbo engines.

Ferrari’s head of engines, Luca Marmorini predicts, “We have to develop the power train in a short space of time and this means that reliability will be the factor that will decide the races in the early part of the season.”

He explained, “In most cases people will locate their turbos in the central rear part of the engine and therefore near the electronics and the temperatures can reach a thousand degrees and that won’t be an easy matter to deal with. Managing temperatures will be one of the main areas [that] we will have to work on.”

2014 is the dawn of a new era for the sport, instead of the current 2.4 litre naturally aspirated V8s, next year the engines will be 1.6 litre turbocharged with energy recovery systems built in.

The energy recovery systems will be powered off the exhaust and will deliver around an extra 160 horsepower for over 30 seconds each lap. The engines will have a rev limit of 15 000 rpm and have to last for around 5000 kilometres as opposed to the current 2000.

Luca Marmorini with Stefano Domenicali

Luca Marmorini with Stefano Domenicali

Speaking during the British GP weekend Marmorini said, “There is no one single aspect of the new project that is more critical than the next.I’d say it’s difficult in all 360 degrees. For example, the turbo is a new type which runs to 25 000 rpm and is definitely something absolutely new.”

“Also the very complex electronics and management systems are a very big step forward, which means that engine management will be a very difficult challenge,” he added.

With Mercedes and Renault already showing off their 2014 power units, the Ferrari man revealed, “We already had a prototype running on the test bench towards the end of last year, while we are completing the one that will run in the actual car at the moment.

“We have a very challenging plan to be ready in March. We can’t afford any hiccup today and I am confident that we will be ready. We have been working for some time to have this car ready but it’s a challenging task. Only at the first race next year will we see if we have done a good job,” concluded Marmorini. (GMM)

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