Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Red Bull and Lotus in repeat of Engine mapping saga

Image courtesy Lotus F1
Close on the heels of Renault powered Williams removing the controversial coanda exhaust solution on their 2013 car and Caterham's solution also being in question, there could be fresh trouble for the other Renault powered cars as well in a return to the engine mapping saga that erupted at Hockenheim 2012.

Red Bull Racing, the works partner for engine supplier Renault were told to stop using certain engine maps last year. The same issue has now been reportedly spotted in the 2013 challengers for Red Bull Racing and Lotus F1, the two front running Renault powered teams after the second preseason test at Barcelona. The report in Germany's Auto Motor und Sport said that despite the FIA issuing a technical directive about engine maps last August, 'It was not clear what should apply for 2013."

Remi Taffin
Luca Marmorini, engine boss at Ferrari is confident that, "Everything remains the same." However, engine boss at Renault, Remi Taffin disagrees and says that, "A new benchmark for engine mapping in 2013 will be set down by teams in Australia next month. The August 2012 directive referred exclusively to last year.

The FIA has since stated to the German reporter Schmidt, that the August 2012 directive still stands, even though Renault were blissfully unaware of the federations stance until Thursday last week at Barcelona, having developed new maps to optimise the heated air exhaust blowing effect for 2013..

With teams at an advanced stage of development and with not much time left for the first race at Australia, Mercedes team boss Ross Brawn thinks this could put Red Bull and Lotus F1 on the back foot as their similar exhaust solutions for 2013 were probably designed to work in conjunction with "a clever engine management system".

See our dummies guide to the engine mapping saga of 2012 and the subsequent FIA directive here.

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