Hasegawa says Honda 'spec 3' F1 engine worth several tenths

Honda believes its upgraded 'spec 3' Formula 1 engine delivered more than two or three tenths of second worth of performance at Azerbaijan's Baku street track

Hasegawa says Honda 'spec 3' F1 engine worth several tenths

The Japanese manufacturer ran a new internal combustion engine (ICE) on Fernando Alonso's car during Friday's two practice sessions.

Honda says the data showed an improvement in performance, but the unit was removed and swapped with an older spec so it could check if a gearbox failure caused any damage to the engine.

Investigations showed the ICE had survived unscathed, meaning it could have been put back in the car without penalty.

But Honda felt it would be better to save mileage and run it in Austria rather than use at a race where points would be difficult given Alonso had a 40-place grid penalty for engine component changes.

"With the internal combustion engine upgrade, we focused on the power," Honda boss Yusuke Hasegawa told Autosport.

"Normally we don't disclose how much power we have gained but in this circuit, the gain is more than two or three tenths with the new engine.

"From a reliability point of view, we didn't have an ICE issue, so we can now concentrate on performance and power."

Hasegawa added that the on-track improvement matched the data predicted by its dynos back at base at Sakura and though he was pleased with the step, he conceded there was plenty still to do.

"We don't see the actual lap time gain in here, but from the power measuring sensor on the car, we saw the same difference from the dyno," he said.

"We are pleased we could bring a performance update here.

"But although the upgrade is reasonable, it is still not good enough to catch the other engine manufacturers.

"We need to accelerate the direction for the next update."

Alonso said it was difficult to assess if there has been an improvement given the programme they ran and though the data showed a gain, he stressed it wasn't enough.

"It's difficult to say because we came from Canada and obviously you get here with race preparation in FP1 so we didn't use the normal programme of fuel load, the normal programme of deployment, DRS," he said.

"We were not using all these things as we were just in race preparation.

"We trust the data and if the data says the engine is delivering a bit more power, it's welcome, but obviously the deficit is still quite big so we need to keep moving in that direction."

Alonso is expected to run the 'spec 3' engine at the next race in Austria.

Autosport understands Honda is hoping to have a second ICE ready in time for Vandoorne.

shares
comments
Romain Grosjean 'fed up' with focus on his radio messages to Haas

Previous article

Romain Grosjean 'fed up' with focus on his radio messages to Haas

Next article

Wolff denies Alonso Mercedes move talks

Wolff denies Alonso Mercedes move talks
Load comments
How Tsunoda plans to achieve his F1 potential Plus

How Tsunoda plans to achieve his F1 potential

Yuki Tsunoda arrived in grand prix racing amid a whirlwind of hype, which only increased after his first race impressed the biggest wigs in Formula 1. His road since has been rocky and crash-filled, and OLEG KARPOV asks why Red Bull maintains faith in a driver who admits he isn’t really that big a fan of F1?

Formula 1
Oct 15, 2021
The danger of reading too much into F1's clickbait radio messages Plus

The danger of reading too much into F1's clickbait radio messages

OPINION: After Lewis Hamilton responded to reports labelling him 'furious' with Mercedes following his heated exchanges over team radio during the Russian Grand Prix, it provided a snapshot on how Formula 1 broadcasting radio snippets can both illuminate and misrepresent the true situation

Formula 1
Oct 14, 2021
Why F1’s approach to pole winners with grid penalties undermines drivers Plus

Why F1’s approach to pole winners with grid penalties undermines drivers

OPINION: Valtteri Bottas is credited with pole position for the 2021 Turkish Grand Prix, despite being beaten in qualifying. This is another example of Formula 1 and the FIA scoring an own goal by forgetting what makes motorsport magic, with the Istanbul race winner also a victim of this in the championship’s recent history

Formula 1
Oct 13, 2021
Turkish Grand Prix Driver Ratings Plus

Turkish Grand Prix Driver Ratings

On a day that the number two Mercedes enjoyed a rare day in the sun, the Turkish Grand Prix produced several standout drives - not least from a driver who has hit a purple patch of late

Formula 1
Oct 11, 2021
The hidden factors that thwarted Hamilton's bid for shock Turkish GP glory Plus

The hidden factors that thwarted Hamilton's bid for shock Turkish GP glory

Starting 11th after his engine change grid penalty, Lewis Hamilton faced a tough task to repeat his Turkish Grand Prix heroics of 2020 - despite making strong early progress in the wet. Instead, his Mercedes team-mate Valtteri Bottas broke through for a first win of the year to mitigate Max Verstappen re-taking the points lead

Formula 1
Oct 11, 2021
How pitstops evolved into an F1 art form Plus

How pitstops evolved into an F1 art form

A Formula 1 pitstop is a rapid-fire blend of high technology and human performance. PAT SYMONDS describes how the science of margin gains makes stops so quick

Formula 1
Oct 10, 2021
Why Mercedes' Istanbul edge is both stronger and weaker than it seems Plus

Why Mercedes' Istanbul edge is both stronger and weaker than it seems

Mercedes and Lewis Hamilton dominated the opening day of action for the 2021 Turkish Grand Prix, on the Istanbul circuit’s much improved track surface. But the Black Arrows squad’s position isn’t quite what it seems. Here’s why

Formula 1
Oct 8, 2021
The rise and fall of Lotus as an F1 superpower Plus

The rise and fall of Lotus as an F1 superpower

On 8 October 1961, Innes Ireland claimed victory at the United States Grand Prix to herald the true arrival of a new Formula 1 giant. While Team Lotus endured plenty of highs and lows until the team folded over three decades later, Colin Chapman's squad made F1 history and helped shape the championship

Formula 1
Oct 8, 2021