Renault wants F1 fuel limit scrapped because it's 'not endurance'

Renault managing director Cyril Abiteboul has called for the abolition of Formula 1's current fuel-capacity limit, believing it is "destroying" the positive messages regarding the power unit technology

Renault wants F1 fuel limit scrapped because it's 'not endurance'

While the 1.6-litre V6 turbocharged hybrid systems are restricted to a fuel-flow rate of 100kg per hour, they are also not allowed to use more than 100kg of fuel during a grand prix.

Discussions over whether to scrap that limit are ongoing but there are differences of opinion, with Mercedes against the proposal while Renault is for it.

Explaining Renault's standpoint, Abiteboul said: "I am a big fan of making sure F1 remains F1. We should not lean towards endurance.

"One of the things that has put F1 in danger, or could be another threat to F1, is if we try to combine F1 and endurance.

"Endurance is about efficiency, sustainability, the capacity to run very long distances without any issues. F1 is about short races, usually being able to attack constantly.

"Frankly, even in the V8 era there was some fuel management. It was part of the tactics, to maximise, to optimise your laptime for the duration of the race from a team strategy perspective.

"It has always been part of F1, without any form of limitation on fuel quantity, so I would remove completely the fuel quantity [regulation]."

The belief is removing the fuel-capacity limit would enable drivers to push more often and for longer, avoiding entering the highly-criticised fuel-saving mode.

"We would see it [removing the regulation] would take all the negativity away from the message regarding this new technology, which is fantastic. We've done an amazing job," added Abiteboul.

"With the engine we use, all the manufacturers - Mercedes in particular - should be given credit for the technology they have been able to introduce, reducing fuel consumption by 30-40 per cent.

"It is just amazing, but this fantastic message is being destroyed by the fact with this fuel limit we are making people believe it is only about managing fuel."

Abiteboul still believes the fuel-flow limitation is "important", and should remain in place to avoid concerns over a potential "arms race" with regard to development.

"You need to also make sure you don't create artificial ways of using the electric motors by burning fuel," added Abiteboul.

"That would be completely opposite to the message we are sending. Fuel flow is sufficient enough, but we don't need a limit on fuel quantity."

Whether a consensus can be reached remains to be seen, but Abiteboul believes the difference in opinion is healthy.

"It's the perfect example that shows we [the engine manufacturers] don't control the sport through engine regulations," said Abiteboul.

"We will always have little disagreements. I have expressed my opinion, Toto [Wolff, Mercedes motorsport boss] has expressed his. That's apparent, and there will be a vote."

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