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Stefano Domenicali

Domenicali open to major F1 revamp - but not until 2030

F1 CEO Stefano Domenicali was speaking about the 2030 regulations.

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Stefano Domenicali says he is personally open to revamping Formula 1 engines to potentially remove the hybrid elements - but not until 2030.

The sound of the 1.6L V6 turbo hybrid power units has long been criticised since they replaced the 2.4L V8 engines ahead of the 2014 season, with a 'trumpet' in the exhaust even being trialled in a bid to increase noise levels. 

In 2026, the units are to receive their biggest upgrade since their adoption, with beefed-up electrical systems set to be introduced, with the MGU-H scrapped, as Audi is set to enter as a works team, with Ford also coming into grand prix racing as a technical partner to Red Bull Powertrains. 

The final chassis and power unit rules for 2026 will be laid out over the next few weeks, and as soon as this is done, Domenicali wants to think ahead to the next cycle. 

"As soon as the 2026 regulations are defined, we will start to think about what the next steps will be, such as for the 2030 engine," Domenicali was quoted as saying by Motorsport.com.

“It is a personal consideration of mine, not yet shared with the teams even if we have spoken about it with the FIA, that if sustainable fuels work, we will need to carefully evaluate whether to continue with hybrid [power units] or whether better solutions will be available."

Weight is the key

The current weight of cars is mandated as a minimum of 798kg, including the driver and fuel. 

Partly due to the weight of the power units, and also due to safety innovations such as the halo, the weight of cars has ballooned in recent years, with the hope being that the cars can shrink in the 2026 overhaul. 

And in keeping the hybrid units, Domenicali believes that a weight increase is "inevitable."

"By keeping the hybrid power unit solution also for 2026, a significant increase in weight is inevitable," he added.

“If we compare a prediction of the 2026 car with a [one] from 10 years ago, we can see that weight has become a significant issue. 

“All drivers would like to have lighter cars, and personally I would also like a slightly [bigger] sound.

“On this last front, we are working to try to increase the number of decibels."

Domenicali also highlighted the fact that the calendar would stick to a maximum of 25 races per season, and that the possibility to further increase the number of sprints from the current six exists.

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