Mercedes F1 technical chief Paddy Lowe says that Red Bull’s push for changes to power unit rules is motivated purely by self-interest.
Christian Horner and Helmut Marko have both called for a move to a ‘low-tech’ twin-turbo V6 for 2016, which they also claim will cost less.
“Apparently a twin-turbo is supposed to be cheaper and a cost saving measure against a single turbo,” Lowe told this writer. “I haven’t quite worked that one out! Perhaps we’ll find out how that works.
“We’ve got clear rules, it was all designed with everyone’s agreement. The reason you have rules for stability in F1, particularly around the power unit, is that it allows people to set good regulations at a distance to be uninvolved with your relative performance. When people are asking for rule changes at short notice it’s all about self-interest.
“Nothing could be a clearer example than what we’re seeing, where somebody is feeling that he’s not on top of the heap at the moment, therefore the rules are all wrong. I don’t remember that happening before. I’ve worked in teams who have had good years and very bad years, I don’t remember anyone ever saying that we should change the rules so that I can win again. I don’t get it.”
Lowe is particularly sceptical about the cost element: “It completely contradicts all the other discussions in F1 which are around being cost effective and maintaining a platform whereby teams can compete whether they are financed as we are one end of the grid, or at the other. There is one simple fact in F1, rule changes cost money, particularly ones involving the engine, so it’s just the most ridiculous idea I’ve ever heard for how to save costs in F1.”