JUNE 12, 2012
Turbos can be affordable, says Haug
Mercedes Motorsport chief Norbert Haug says that spending on F1's new 'green' V6 turbos, scheduled for 2014, could be no greater than the current engines if averaged out over a five-year period.
The concern in the F1 paddock is that the development costs of the new engines, allied to more powerful and complex energy recovery systems, will make drive trains prohibitively expensive for F1's mid and lower-ranking teams.
Fears are that engine budgets could more than double, to over $20m, returning to the situation that existed around 10 years ago.
"It's a bit premature to give a figure," Haug said in Montreal, "but we should realise where we are coming from. The engines cost twice as much 10 years ago as they do right now and that's due to the hard work of the manufacturers in the first place. It's absolutely clear that if you introduce a new engine it will cost more in the beginning.
"What we should do is consider a five-year period where the target is close to current spending levels and I think that's achievable."
It is rumoured that there could yet be attempts to further delay or even scrap the introduction of turbo engines (originally scheduled by the FIA for 2013). The specification has already changed from a flat four layout to a V6, however, and manufacturers well down the road with their new engines claim that a further delay would only increase development costs.