No engine equalisation for 2010

James Allen reported this weekend that the FIA will not be allowing the different engine performance to be equalised before the start of the 2010 season. You may or may not know but the engines in F1 cars are fixed in terms of performance for the whole season, the manufacturers cannot improve or put better parts on the engine that will give it an advantage over the competition.

In order to stop the engine manufactures spending millions of pounds per year on developing their engine designs in the hope to find tenths of a second advantage over the rivals, the FIA put the restrictions in place at the start of the 2008 season, however a process of re-equalisation happened just before the 2009 season primarily to help the Renault F1 team who claimed their engine had fallen behind in performance.

This is not very good news for teams that do not use the Mercedes engine, because it is paddock opinion that the Mercedes engine is not just the most powerful engine but also the most fuel efficient, and with the rules changing banning in race refuelling, fuel efficency is going to be important as they will have to carry more fuel at the start of each race so teams not using the German powerplant are going to have to find advantage through their chassis design which will take hours of design time and a hefty cost.

James Allen points out that despite the poor reputation of the Renault engine, the power plant was able to provide victories in the Redbull chassis, so perhaps the poor car that the official Renault F1 team have produced the last couple of season has projected a negative perception over the French manufacturers engine performance.

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