Honda suspects oil tank in F1 engine caused testing problems

Honda suspects the problems that cost it valuable track time on the opening day of pre-season Formula 1 testing could be related to the design of its oil tank

Honda suspects oil tank in F1 engine caused testing problems

McLaren's Fernando Alonso was confined to the garage for much of Monday after an issue with the oil system was picked up following an installation lap.

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The engine was removed from the car and will be taken back to Honda's Sakura facility for an investigation, with a new unit fitted for the afternoon so Alonso could get some laps under his belt.

Taking over from Alonso on Tuesday, Stoffel Vandoorne stopped at pitlane at the end of his second installation lap.

Although there is no confirmation about what caused Monday's problem, Honda's F1 chief Yusuke Hasegawa suspects that it may be an issue with the design of the oil tank.

"Based on initial investigations, we think the issue is related to the shape of the 2017 oil tank, but it requires further investigation before we can confirm this," said Hasegawa.

Should the issue with the tank be confirmed, a redesign could cause some headaches.

Any design changes could have implications to the packaging of the rest of the power unit and chassis installation, with space likely to be at a premium in this area of the MCL32.

This is why it was going to take McLaren several hours to access this area of the car to find the initial cause of the problem on Monday.

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