Tech F1i - Canada signals second phase of 2018 engine war

'© F1i '

On a demanding power circuit, Ferrari, Renault and Honda have released the second specification of their powertrains. It gives us the opportunity to look closely at the V6 hybrids, while listening to the developments which Haas, Ferrari, Renault and Red Bull have worked into their chassis.


After having made major modifications to their chassis in Spain, the teams have traditionally introduced their first engine evolution in Canada. There are two reasons for that.

Firstly, the long straight lines of the Gilles Villeneuve circuit require some strong cavalry (60% of the lap is covered at full throttle), while the short braking and acceleration spots on the circuit require a precise distribution of the power and fast turbo response.

Secondly, this year the Quebec round marks the end of the first one third of a season allowing only three engines (to be precise: 3 internal combustion engines, 3 turbochargers and 3 MGU-H, 2 MGU-K, 2 energy stores and 2 electronic control units).

In Montreal, Ferrari introduced its second specification of the 062 EVO block on Sebastian Vettel’s car. Victorious on Sunday, the German had gone into battle with a new combustion engine, a new turbocharger and a new MGU-H. The new version is expected to bring a slight gain in power (said to be worth 5bhp), while improving fuel efficiency with a new formulation of fuel provided by Shell (who also optimized the oil).

Kimi Räikkönen, whose engine had to be replaced in Spain, received only a new turbocharger (the third one). In seven races, the Finn has already used all his turbos. It proves that as expected, reliability will play a crucial role this season.

As for the drivers of the Haas and Sauber racing teams, they had already used the “step 2” of the Ferrari V6 during free practice of the Monaco Grand Prix, which had allowed the Italian engine manufacturers to check the reliability of the new model one last time, and to spread the production of the new powerplants.