Formula 1 Power Units are set to get louder in 2016, with a regulation change from the FIA this week which states: “all cars must have a separate exhaust wastegate tailpipe through which all and only wastegate exhaust gases must past” in measures to increase the noise of the engines.
This effectively means the teams will be running with two tailpipes rather than the single, which could increase the ‘grunt’ of the engine noise when the drivers apply the power. According to ScarbsF1 it also allows Honda to change its turbo turbine without using up any tokens, as its casing has it already incorporated.
The sound of the current generation of F1 cars has been criticised from many senior people within the sport, non more important than Bernie Ecclestone, who said earlier this year that the engines were “crap” and were making the sport difficult to market. Concerns over a reduction of circuit fees were also raised should they attract less crowds due to the engine noise.
Solutions to make the engines louder in the mean time were thought of, namely the Mercedes ‘megaphone exhaust’ solution which was tested in May last year after the Spanish Grand Prix. But it didn’t make too much of a difference to the noise, despite data showing it would.
The new solution should “not have any significant effect on power or emissions” according to the FIA, who along with these changes clarified some other changes to the sporting regulations including measures on track limits.
Drivers must now “make every reasonable effort to use the track at all times and may not deliberately leave the track without a justifiable reason,” however track-limits penalties will still be judged on whether that driver managed to gain an advantage or not by doing so.
Any driver who causes an aborted start will also be told to start from the pit lane, and clarifications on CFD and wind tunnel usage has also been made, “specifically focusing on reporting and inspection processes for these development tools.” Also, from 2017 mounting on-board cameras on stalks on the noses of cars will be prohibited.