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Why do we have an engine freeze


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#1 scolbourne

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Posted 08 April 2014 - 14:01

To me the argument that an engine freeze  is to save money can not  be true as the engine manufacturers will be spending more money before the freeze to try to ensure their engine is up to a higher enough level. I hear Mercedes spent $500million on developing their engine.

 

The arguments against an engine freeze are many :-

 

It allows the weaker engines to catch up.

It allows for new developments.

We do not have to have corrupt deals where   changes  are allowed for safety or reliability.

 

 

I also need to ask what things are covered by the engine freeze. Does it include all the electrical and turbine parts ?

 

 

 

 

 



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#2 Gorma

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Posted 08 April 2014 - 14:05

May I suggest that you read the technical and sporting regulations and then come back.

#3 EthanM

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Posted 08 April 2014 - 14:12

http://www.fia.com/s...014-01-23_0.pdf

 

Appendix 4 right at the end

 

as to why .. cost .. prevent arms race ... blah blah blah



#4 HuddersfieldTerrier1986

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Posted 08 April 2014 - 14:26

Cost. Anyway, saying it allows the weaker engines to catch up..........well does it really? The only way that would be guaranteed to happen is if you said to the engine manufacturer with the best engine "you can't develop but everyone else can". It's not like the manufacturer with the best engine wouldn't improve too........



#5 SenorSjon

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Posted 08 April 2014 - 14:27

Luckily we didn't have an aero arms race... oh wait.

 

@above

That is wat Renault did. In 2008 they were by far the weaker engine. The Torro Rosse vs. Red Bull is a prime example that year.


Edited by SenorSjon, 08 April 2014 - 14:28.


#6 August

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Posted 08 April 2014 - 14:51

I'm spectical about the cost saving effect of the development freeze. That money is going to be spend somehow anyway.



#7 superden

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Posted 08 April 2014 - 14:53

Why do we have an engine freeze? Why, to annoy a large percentage of this board it seems.



#8 TC3000

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Posted 08 April 2014 - 15:01

because that's what the teams/manufacturer wanted - simple



#9 LeMans86

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Posted 08 April 2014 - 15:01

There's a limit to how much money a company can spend in a certain time. With engine development completely free for the coming years, they can, will and have to spend significantly more than with the part-freeze that is in place now.
No engine manufacturer would have decreased their initial spending without a freeze, saying "Nah, let's just use half the budget and see where we end up. Might be we're way outclassed, but who cares, there's no freeze so we can catch up easily if necessary". First of all because they want to start with the best engine possible that they can design, second of all, because catching up/getting on par with the other engines would be difficult since they can also be developed without restrictions.
Free development would lead to two or three things: of course better (more powerful, efficient) engines but also bigger gaps between the engines (some manufacturers just have bigger budgets that'll keep flowing) resulting in all teams wanting the same engines and engine manufacturers wanting to leave the sport..

#10 Petroltorque

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Posted 08 April 2014 - 15:15

And with the above excellent post I think we can put this topic to bed.

#11 scolbourne

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Posted 08 April 2014 - 15:24

Surely the less wealthy manufacturers can learn from the ideas developed by the others and catch up at low cost. They can also realise where they have made a bad decision in their design and rectify it. Eventually all teams would end up with the "perfect engine", thus closing the gap between them.

Getting it right before the season starts would probably cost much more.

Are the teams who opted for the manufacturer of the inferior engines just meant to accept that they will waste a season ?



#12 superden

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Posted 08 April 2014 - 15:28

So the perfect engine would essentially be exactly the same across the board. There's a name for that ... ah yes, spec series.



#13 krumpli12

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Posted 08 April 2014 - 15:54

Surely, no engine freeze would mean spending lot of money, but is this not what is happening right now? We have three engine manufacturers, none of them are exactly poor, of course, Mercedes would have the edge moneywise even if there wouldn't be a freeze, but they have that advantage with these regulations as well. Is this really better what we have now? Ferrari and Renault will have to spend shitload of money for trying to bring at least respectable performances on track (we are not talking about catching Mercedes, I am quite sure they won't be able to do that for years), while they will spend the whole year in a nearly impossible situation: they will spend huge money for simply participating in the series, when there is no real chance for good results. It's even worse for the smaller teams. It is not only the money which is spent for development what you have to consider as cost, but also the money which is spent without any real or for downright laughable result. And you have to take the sponsors also into consideration, smaller teams already have a lot of problems attracting them, what can e.g. a Sauber offer for a new sponsor now? But let's talk about the teams as well: I am sure, Red Bull is not going to be too happy, if they won't be able to put on a good fight, and I am sure Ferrari won't be too happy either with the image damage this season can cost them.

 

So, I think, it is a much more complex question. 



#14 Massa

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Posted 08 April 2014 - 15:55

And with the above excellent post I think we can put this topic to bed.

 

Why ? Engine freeze bring nothing. Today, each team wants to have a Mercedes engine, so if the purpose of the freeze was to have a grid with plenty of different engine constructor it's a fail. And i won't be surprise if Sauber ask to Mercedes to supply them, and the same with Marussia with the Honda since they work with Mclaren. So the best engine in the field could have one more team to supply next year...

 

The FIA want efficient engines, so let's the team develop more efficient engines during the season. I really don't understand the purpose of a freeze. And it was the same during the V8 era, these engines was based on the 2006 one..



#15 GVera

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Posted 08 April 2014 - 16:11

There's a limit to how much money a company can spend in a certain time. With engine development completely free for the coming years, they can, will and have to spend significantly more than with the part-freeze that is in place now.
No engine manufacturer would have decreased their initial spending without a freeze, saying "Nah, let's just use half the budget and see where we end up. Might be we're way outclassed, but who cares, there's no freeze so we can catch up easily if necessary". First of all because they want to start with the best engine possible that they can design, second of all, because catching up/getting on par with the other engines would be difficult since they can also be developed without restrictions.
Free development would lead to two or three things: of course better (more powerful, efficient) engines but also bigger gaps between the engines (some manufacturers just have bigger budgets that'll keep flowing) resulting in all teams wanting the same engines and engine manufacturers wanting to leave the sport..

But at the end of the year the manufacturers will be free to homologate a new engine for 2015 so development is still at full speed these days.

In this scenario I don't understand why they cannot race the updates, it's silly to continue developing in the dyno till the end of the year.


Edited by GVera, 08 April 2014 - 16:11.


#16 ExFlagMan

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Posted 08 April 2014 - 16:28

But at the end of the year the manufacturers will be free to homologate a new engine for 2015 so development is still at full speed these days[./quote]
In this scenario I don't understand why they cannot race the updates, it's silly to continue developing in the dyno till the end of the year.[/u]

And then fans would be claiming 'their' team was not getting the upgrades as soon as they are available to the manufacturers 'favourite' team. Or would the engine supplier be made to simultaneously force-feed the upgrades to all their customer teams, whether they wanted them or not.

There is a big difference between making and testing a development engine and building enough upgraded engines to supply all the teams for the rest of the season.

Also not sure how frequent upgrades would fit in with limited engines rules. OK you could scrap that rule, but then the cost of engine supply to the customer teams would shoot up - not sure how many teams could survive that.

#17 metz

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Posted 08 April 2014 - 17:20

I'm spectical about the cost saving effect of the development freeze.

Erm....I can't see it either..



#18 Kyo

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Posted 08 April 2014 - 17:30

Can teams bring a new engine next year or they will need to be the same as this year? Because if they can change their engine for next year I don't see how teams are saving any money since they will continue to develop these engines for next year.



#19 Timstr11

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Posted 08 April 2014 - 17:52

Can teams bring a new engine next year or they will need to be the same as this year? Because if they can change their engine for next year I don't see how teams are saving any money since they will continue to develop these engines for next year.

Imagine if teams could bring performance updates this year. It would mean for teams to bring updates to the track frequently. Thus a high turnaround time for research > development > production and thus an enormous increase in spending to have the capacity to do all of that within a year for all customer teams. Whereas if you're performance update is for next year, you do not need as much capacity in those areas and thus much less spending. And we're not talking peanuts here.



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#20 undersquare

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Posted 08 April 2014 - 17:59

IMO it's a spec engine deal.  At one time Max even proposed a common engine badged to suit, but teams didn't want it to be that blatant.  Now nobody will be prevented from catching up; like last time.



#21 S3baman

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Posted 08 April 2014 - 18:01

I'm not quite sure I agree with the homologation process for this year. Since Honda and possibly Cosworth are to enter next year, allow the manufacturers to bring the updates to the track throughout the year. Yes, I do enjoy seeing the two Mercs fighting it out at the front, but I don't want to see a two series F1 for the entire year. Allow Renault and Ferrari to bring any upgrades they are able to make during the season, it'll only make the races more competitive.

 

At the start of 2014, just freeze all engines and simply allow reliability updates for the new entrants since they don't have any prior race mileage. Why does the FIA need to complicate things I do not know  :mad:  :mad:



#22 HoldenRT

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Posted 08 April 2014 - 18:49

What I have always found bizarre is freezing it before a race had even started.  The V8's were frozen after years of on track competition, testing and development.

 

They were frozen 2-3 weeks after hitting the test track, after getting the ontrack feedback from the car.  Before competing in a race.  I just find this bizarre regardless of whether or not it would be an engine part, a wing, a gearbox, a diffuser or anything else.

 

As far as I know, they are unfrozen at the end of the year and refrozen before the season starts, which again I find weird.. but yeah.  The only thing they can change right now is reliability updates but behind the scenes they are still developing for next season.



#23 Petroltorque

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Posted 09 April 2014 - 07:22

I think people are getting confused between homologation and freezing. Homologation means that certain design components are agreed before the season starts. Improvements can still be made IN SEASON on the grounds of fuel economy eg, weight saving and component costs, eg finding cheaper supplier. There is NO engine freeze. There is graduation of the homologation process meaning less and less components can be changed year by year but the engines themselves aren't locked down till 2017. I could be wrong about that date.

 The fact that one particular manufacturer has done an outstanding job is no excuse to complain about the rules.


Edited by Petroltorque, 09 April 2014 - 07:24.


#24 SenorSjon

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Posted 09 April 2014 - 07:54

It is the rules we are complaining about, not the Merc advantage. What if we applied the same reasoning to aero? You can homologate only five aero pieces a year. So no tinkering around with the front wing every other race.

 

You can only use five engines/driver. So why is it frozen anyway? And manufacturers aren't allowed to provide B-spec engines with less power to other teams at reduced costs.



#25 Seanspeed

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Posted 09 April 2014 - 07:58

Can teams bring a new engine next year or they will need to be the same as this year? Because if they can change their engine for next year I don't see how teams are saving any money since they will continue to develop these engines for next year.

That's a good point. Because yes, the freeze is lifted at the end of the year and teams can have new engines in 2015.

#26 Seanspeed

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Posted 09 April 2014 - 08:03

I think people are getting confused between homologation and freezing. Homologation means that certain design components are agreed before the season starts. Improvements can still be made IN SEASON on the grounds of fuel economy eg, weight saving and component costs, eg finding cheaper supplier. There is NO engine freeze. There is graduation of the homologation process meaning less and less components can be changed year by year but the engines themselves aren't locked down till 2017. I could be wrong about that date.
 The fact that one particular manufacturer has done an outstanding job is no excuse to complain about the rules.

Locking down certain components before the start of the season *is* a freeze. These parts cannot be changed, except by special exception from the FIA. And having these parts frozen means limited room for improvement, as if in redesign, the team discover that to do what they want to do, they need to change one of the frozen parts, then they are SOL.

Its not a total freeze though, no.

#27 superdelphinus

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Posted 09 April 2014 - 08:38

I can understand why the freeze was put in place, but I do think it's a shame to have one clearly better engine that no-one else can really do anything about.

#28 scolbourne

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Posted 09 April 2014 - 14:44

Ignoring all the  talk about cost savings and fairness.

Allowing teams to modify the engines each race would add to the interest for the educated fans.

There would be the thrill and suspense of seeing what new ideas the teams had come up with and we would not be simply expecting the same team to have the best car and engine for every race.

At the moment I can safely say that the constructors championship  is over and the drivers championship is going to be won by one of two drivers.

Is there really any point watching any more ?



#29 scheivlak

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Posted 09 April 2014 - 14:47

Ignoring all the  talk about cost savings and fairness.

Allowing teams to modify the engines each race would add to the interest for the educated fans.

There would be the thrill and suspense of seeing what new ideas the teams had come up with and we would not be simply expecting the same team to have the best car and engine for every race.

At the moment I can safely say that the constructors championship  is over and the drivers championship is going to be won by one of two drivers.

Is there really any point watching any more ?

People who only watch races to see how the championship table evolves deserve to be disappointed  :wave:



#30 scolbourne

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Posted 09 April 2014 - 14:55

People who only watch races to see how the championship table evolves deserve to be disappointed  :wave:

So you are happy to see one team have an advantage that the other teams are prevented from closing by the rules. I have no complaints about Mercedes spending a fortune to develop a great engine package, but I would like to think that the other teams could eventually match its performance through skill and hard work before the end of the year.



#31 F1ultimate

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Posted 09 April 2014 - 15:03

It would be ridiculously expensive to produce engines updates throughout a season. First of all the updates would need testing multiple times over, and even stress tested. That potentially means 3D printing very expensive engine parts to then have them, and the engine they are tested in, pushed until it implodes. 

 

These engines would also need to be tested in each customer car too. So you could be looking at 5-20 prototype engines be tested every month by every manufacturer. Cost wise it would be unsustainable.