SATURDAY 20TH AUGUST 2005
Ferrari technical director Ross Brawn says that initial tests with the new V8 have been satisfactory, and that managing the torque curve of the new engine will be the major issue.
Marc Gene has been conducted the initial tests of the development car.
"Marc is the only one who's driven the car so far," said Brawn. "And his comments really are that the engine doesn't feel that bad at the top end. The reduction of power doesn't seem so great. You notice it in the lower end and the middle range. It has a lot less torque, which is as expected.
"The torque curve is a little bit difficult. One of the more difficult things is one of the new regulation changes is that removable trumpets are banned. And that does do a lot to flatten the torque curve. So the torque curve is a bit lumpy at the moment. We're trying to tune the engine to smooth out the torque curve."
Traditionally V8s present vibration problems, but Ross says there is no serious issue so far.
"There's a little bit more vibration at low revs, but the vibration high up isn't that different. Some of our systems like traction control and so on are not very well optimised for the V8 torque curve and the V8 power delivery, so there's things like that which we're looking at. But he didn't find it too bad."
The manufacturers have been complaining that developing the new engines has meant a significant cost increase, but Brawn says that after the initial change, budgets will stabilise.
"I think we all know that change costs. There's very little change that you can make in F1 that doesn't initially cost more money. Any change to a fundamental new type of engine will initially cost. But I think it will stabilise at a lower level than what we're spending now. I'm not sure there is any fundamental difference in developing a V8 or a V10. I don't see any reason why it should be more expensive."
Marc Gene - Ferrari