Bernie Ecclestone says he was “horrified” by the lack of sound from the 2014 F1 cars at Sunday’s Australian Grand Prix and has vowed to find a way of “making them sound like racing cars.”
New engine regulations this season have seen the high-pitched scream of the 2.4 liter V8 engines used between 2006 and 2013 replaced by a deeper and much quieter growl of 1.6 liter turbocharged, hybrid V6 units. The cheers and shrieks from the crowd and squeals from the Pirelli rubber were much more audible than in the past. Ecclestone, a long-time critic of the sport’s switch to the new-generation engines, says F1 cannot wait all season to rectify the noise situation and is hoping to find a solution after the first few races.
“I was not horrified by the noise, I was horrified by the lack of it,” the F1 boss said. “We need to see whether there is some way of making them sound like racing cars.”
“I don’t know whether it’s possible but we should investigate. I think let’s get the first few races out of the way and then maybe look to do something. We can’t wait all season. It could be too late by then.”
But as Sky Sports’ Martin Brundle commented:
[T]he upside is that the high level of torque being produced, four times greater than last year at times, means that the drivers are really challenged in keeping the cars under control. Add in more weight and less downforce and we saw some incredible skills. The drivers won’t like it, and no doubt downforce will be regained and engine power delivery calmed to an extent, but they will be revered for mastering these cars just like the ’80s champions. There’s now definitely more of an element of “I couldn’t do that” for onlookers than in recent years.