Mercedes, Ferrari give less powerful engines to customers - Ecclestone

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Bernie Ecclestone says the F1 engines supplied by Mercedes and Ferrari to their customer teams have “a lot less power” than the ones used by their respective works outfit.

F1’s commercial rights chief has been openly and repeatedly criticising the two manufacturers for the past few months in the light of their reluctance to endorse measures to introduce cheaper power units.

Ecclestone first warned that Mercedes and Ferrari’s grip on the sport could end up destroying it altogether before adding that he believed there was a gentleman’s agreement between the two rivals.

With eight out of the 11 teams supplied by either Mercedes or Ferrari, the 85-year-old supremo doubts any other squad can challenge the big two in 2016.

“Mercedes supply four [sic] of these power units to the smaller teams and obviously they supply them with a lot less power than they have in their own cars,” he told Canadian radio TSN. “So you’ve got rid of four teams.”

“Ferrari supply three teams in exactly the same way. Ferrari’s not as powerful, their engine, as Mercedes, but it’s getting there. Anyway they supply other teams and the teams they supply the engine’s not as good.

“So all we’ve got really and truly is Mercedes and Ferrari - I hope - racing each other.”

A staunch opponent of the current engine regulations, Ecclestone once again hit out at the 1.6-litre V6 turbocharged units by saying these are deterring new constructors from entering the sport.

“The problem we have is the power units. When Formula One was built, there was a manufacturer that made engines and everyone used it, except Ferrari. It was a level-playing field then. Now, it is not.

“So we’re in the process of doing something about it. We’ve just got to make these engines much more simple in order to have another manufacturer come in and supply people.”

Along with FIA president Jean Todt, Ecclestone was recently given a special mandate by the sport’s governing body to forge ahead with recommendations on a number of “pressing issues”, including “power units and cost reduction”. They have until January 31 to bring their proposals forward.

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