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Ross Brawn says next F1 engine must avoid ‘soft middle ground’

13 July 2017

Formula One’s next engine formula will retain hybrid technology, but Formula One boss Ross Brawn has insisted that the solution can’t be a ‘soft middle ground’ between what manufacturers and fans want.

The current V6 turbo hybrids will remain in F1 until 2020 when the existing engine agreement between teams and the sport expires. Brawn has represented Formula One management in a series of meetings this year to determine which way F1 goes next and says he is determined to find the right solution for the future of the sport rather than a compromise.

“We’re in debate with the engine manufacturers and car manufacturers and some of the engineering companies like Cosworth and Ilmor,” Brawn said at F1’s London Live event on Wednesday. “It’s not a question really of finding a sort of soft middle ground where you don’t offend anyone because I don’t think that will be the best solution. But hybrid technology is probably going to be retained because it offers some relevance, it offers the engagement of manufacturers, but can we turn it around a little bit and make it a tactical quality?”

Brawn acknowledged that many fans wanted to see a return to the normally aspirated engines of the past ‘because it creates more emotion with the noise and the revs’.

“So can we create a hybrid engine that has that noise and the revs and the appeal?’ he added. ‘I think the manufacturers involved in Formula One know that’s the key element, because they need to have a successful Formula One.

“It’s no good having an engineering exercise that demonstrates your technology if nobody’s watching.”

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