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The boss of Mercedes Toto Wolff warned that Formula 1 should focus on costs when enacting new drive unit regulations for 2026.
Wolff says the sport made a mistake when the current rules were drawn up because they proved too complex and too expensive. Those rules will be in effect for another five seasons, but discussions have already begun about what will replace them.
F1, the FIA and manufacturers want to find the right balance of hybrid power and internal combustion, with sustainable fuels playing a key role. There is also a focus on the cost element as part of trying to attract new manufacturers.
"The discussion was very good. It is interesting where the car industry is going, because everything is developing in the direction of electric mobility, but there is also a new look at the internal combustion engine and the combination with electric drive. ”- TOTO WOLFF
“I believe we should look at the costs. The development of a completely new power unit is not the path we should take. We know we made that mistake in 2011 and 2012 when we made a very sophisticated and at the same time very efficient drive unit, but it has become very complex. ”
"As things stand, I think we need to have a combination of what we have today - an internal combustion engine and add hybrid energy and power to have a better balance between sustainable energy propulsion and conventional ICE engines."
Wolff stressed that the cost of the engine program and the use of sustainable fuels are important to Mercedes.
"I don't think it's about simplification, it's just about not increasing costs. And apart from more electrical components with potentially larger or more powerful batteries, sustainable fuels are definitely the future. ”- TOTO WOLFF
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