Teams still uncertain of engine measures
|By Dieter Rencken||Saturday, January 14th 2006, 13:20 GMT|
Formula One teams are still uncertain on how the FIA will measure engine parameters, according to Toyota's engine technical director, Luca Marmorini.
New engine regulations for 2006 stipulate that there must be a minimum weight and a minimum height for the centre of gravity, but Marmorini said the teams were unsure how these dimensions would be measured.
"The teams have all put in their proposals on the method of checking the centre of mass (gravity)," the Italian said. "As of now, we are confident that we have met the FIA's requirements, but exactly how they will measure it, we don't know.
"But we don't think a few millimeters up or down are a major performance parameter, so we hope they will be a little bit flexible."
Speaking at the launch of the TF106 in Toyota's Valenciennes manufacturing plant in France, Marmorini said his team have asked for clarification from the governing body as they hope their engines will meet the FIA's requirements.
"We are hopeful of meeting the minimum weight (95 kilograms), but until we know exactly what weighing procedure is used, we can't be 100% sure. We don't want to get to the first race and get disqualified, so we have asked for clarity.
"We believe the FIA will send a person to each team to weigh the engine and record the weight. Teams will then be required to advise the FIA of any changes to major components. But we are not sure exactly what will be weighed and what liquids will have to be drained."
Marmorini, who confirmed that Toyota planned two major engine performance enhancements during the season, was also hopeful that the thorny question of V10/V8 equivalence would be resolved soon.
"We hope this matter will be finalized soon. In all my years in Formula One, I have never known equivalence to work, because the situations change from track to track. The best solution is no equivalence, which means V8s only."
According to the Italian, laptimes are expected to increase by between 1.5 and three seconds in real terms, "depending on the nature of the circuit," while chassis technical director Mike Gascoyne suggested the deficit would be at worst two seconds through chassis and aerodynamic clawback.
"We could see increases of one to two seconds on power circuits, with times on handling circuits being similar to last year," said Gascoyne.