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What is a Mecachrome engine?

OBSERVERS at the test in Barcelona reported that the relative performance of the Williams and Benetton teams seems to suggest that perhaps the two teams are being supplied with rather different versions of the Mecachrome V10 engine. When the two teams engines were being supplied by Renault Sport both had an agreement which meant that they were getting exactly the same equipment.

Although Renault Sport is still involved with the project, developing the V10s for Mecachrome, that development must now be paid and Mecachrome will only invest the money in development if it makes financial sense - which means that it is being paid for the developments by the teams involved.

Neither team is going to allow itself to be compromised in terms of engine performance because its rival does not wish to invest in the program and the only logical conclusion, therefore, is that Mecachrome will supply different engines to the teams based on the amount of money they are paying.

Mecachrome's Jean-Yves Houe says that there are plans for new steps forward but that these have not yet been finalized and are dependent on money.

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