Aston Martin "Cancel" F1 Engine Plans

Aston Martin No F1.jpg

Aston Martin Chief Executive, Andy Palmer confirms the British marque are no longer interested in producing an engine for Formula One racing post 2021.


With potential new engine regulations designed to cap the spiralling cost of development mooted to come into play for the 2021 Grand Prix season, several new manufacturers have been spotted involved in heavy negotiations with the power brokers behind Formula One over the last 12 months, taking part in multiple planning sessions and forming part of a group of OEM's working towards solidifying plans to bring about a new chapter of power unit performance within the sport.

With representatives from Cosworth, Porsche and Aston Martin all having taken some role within the negotiation process, it has long been thought that the possibility of another new engine manufacturer within the sport is within reach come the rollout of the proposed simplification and cost reduction plans for the coming years.

However with those outline intentions revealed back in April having now seemingly moved further away from the initial concept, Palmer has confirmed his Aston Martin brand will no longer be looking to pursue a programme in Grand Prix racing, confirming the historic marque has "cancelled" plans to enter the top tier of open wheel racing in the immediate future:

“When it looked like the rules were going to change, we did take a look at whether we should do our own engine for F1,” Palmer speaking to the Reuters news service said this weekend.​

“But then Liberty essentially changed their mind and continued with the current engine, so we cancelled those plans.”
News of Aston Martin's decision to move away from a serious review of an entry into Formula One will come as a blow to a sport where only Mercedes, Ferrari, Renault and Honda are represented on the engine front, leaving new owners Liberty Media something of a headache as they continue to investigate ways of making the series more attractive to new teams and manufacturers going forward, something the category has failed to achieve in the last few years.

With Cosworth also having gone alarmingly quiet on the subject in recent months, and the potential involvement of Porsche only ever having been considered as exploratory at best, it looks like the big four brands will continue to dominate the championship for the next few years at least.

 
 
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Patrick van der Meulen

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Well Indycars are dominated by only two engine suppliers ;)
 

Patrick van der Meulen

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Aren't both of those more like spec series, where it is more up to the driver? While F1 should be manufacturer competition...
In a sense F1 is just like spec series but with more freedom regarding chassis as long it stays within regulations. Engine requirements are pretty tight but up to a degree where they can push boundries.
 

Paul Jeffrey

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Personally I would love to see a regulation set that favours the return of independent and semi independent engine builders once again, rather than just big manufacturers.

Anyone remember Hart and Judd, heck even Cosworth and Yamaha and plenty more besides!

How cool would it be to see a return of the small specialists, and have a field where maybe 10 odd different engine manufacturers thrived? One can only dream..
 

DND

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A dream of the late 80's early 90's? I am all for that Paul.
 

Will Mazeo

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Personally I would love to see a regulation set that favours the return of independent and semi independent engine builders once again, rather than just big manufacturers.

Anyone remember Hart and Judd, heck even Cosworth and Yamaha and plenty more besides!

How cool would it be to see a return of the small specialists, and have a field where maybe 10 odd different engine manufacturers thrived? One can only dream..
Only budget caps would make that happen because I doubt F1 is going to set a ban on some very expensive materials they use since the engineering of these materials is where F1 shines (brazilian commentators said F1 is compared to military aviation in that regard). But I guess the slow down in development is exactly why these caps haven't been approved yet.
 

PhilS13

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Personally I would love to see a regulation set that favours the return of independent and semi independent engine builders once again, rather than just big manufacturers.

How cool would it be to see a return of the small specialists, and have a field where maybe 10 odd different engine manufacturers thrived?
Small specialists existed only because, let's face it, engines back then were nothing special.

You want uncle joe's CNC shop to build engines you gonna have to dumb them down. A lot.
 

Nico

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May 4, 2017
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I personally find hilarious that Aston Martin, a manufacturer that doesn't make its own engines for its own road cars, at some point considered venturing themselves into making something as difficult and complex as the modern F1 power units, even if they intended to have someone to guide them ala Illmor with Mercedes. If Honda engines work well, they will be the definitive answer Red Bull has been looking for all these years.
 

Patrik Marek

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Porsche could have been quite interesting though, or return of Cossworth, but with those prices, no wonder they stay away

I don't think that not too many engine manufactures is what is the problem with F1, A1GP had one chassis / one engine, and was quite fun to watch, although of course never had nearly as much coverage as F1

not really sure why It failed, it had great potential imo. Loved the fact that the teams were representing nations, and since everyone had the same car, you couldn't blame other teams for having bettter car/engine to work with
 

Pepper606

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Mar 22, 2017
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Really disappointing news, F1 like anything else that wants to thrive needs new blood and the new ideas that follow.
They obviously know F1 needs change and I just don't see it, I hope it IS happening behind the scenes.
I'd be happy to lose some of what we have now to go back several decades and have real individual teams competing.
 

Will Mazeo

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Honestly I think what keep these manufacturers away of F1 is more due to lack of teams they could partner with that would make their engine shine.
Outside Mercedes, Ferrari and Red Bull there is literally nobody else capable of competing. You are going to put a ton of money into a development that may go nowhere and potentially find yourself into a situation like Honda and McLaren (ok Honda engine was crap, but so is the McLaren job).
If Honda goes well with Red Bull then all the doors to win something are pretty much closed for the next years. And I doubt Renault will stay much longer.
Opening your own team also takes a lot of budget and you may never get anywhere.
F1 needs to learn with WEC maybe, those rules managed to be very open (some say more open than F1) and they could fight very well. But cant forget there they only had 3 manufacturers in best years, that is pretty much like F1.
 
Mar 17, 2018
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1.6litre v6 hybrid engine, because every supercar has one.

Aston Martin Vantage - 4litre v8
Mercedes AMG - 6.2litre v8
Porsche Carrera GT - 5.7litre v10
BMW m5 - 4.4litre v8
Ferrari 458 - 4.5litre v8
Lamborghini Aventador - 6.5litre v12
Chevrolet Corvette ZR1 - 6.2litre v8
Lexus LFA - 4.8litre v10
Audi R8 - 5.2litre v10
Maserati MC12 - 6litre v12
McLaren F1 - 3.8litre v8
Dodge Viper ACR - 8.4litre v10

I rest my case.....
 

Patrick van der Meulen

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1.6litre v6 hybrid engine, because every supercar has one.

- list of very cool cars -

I rest my case.....
I do miss my Nissan Note 1.2 3 in-line natural aspirated supercar in your list. Yes it lacks a few horses... It does only have 80 not so prancing horses. But it’s a wonder of engineering space in a car. Thus a real usable reasonable sized family supercar :p:roflmao:.

On the serious side: yes, your point is o so valid. Current engine regulations doesn’t have that much to do with innovations anymore. Overly complicated engines which development costs are so skyrocketing high to even be backbenching the field as newcomer. Let alone to develop a truly competitive engine. Besides the development cost of a proper chassis able to perform.

Formula-E is much more a usable development platform than current F1 in that regard. But dat FE sound :thumbsdown:. F1 should go back to basic. And kinda like Indycar spec cars and engines would be a more appropriate direction than the current direction of F1. A death walking alley in which even F1 engine manufacturers seems to be actively prevent new engine manufacturers from entering F1 by blocking the much needed change of current engine regulations to lower the costs of developing F1 engines.
 

formidable

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Jan 21, 2012
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Personally I would love to see a regulation set that favours the return of independent and semi independent engine builders once again, rather than just big manufacturers.

Anyone remember Hart and Judd, heck even Cosworth and Yamaha and plenty more besides!

How cool would it be to see a return of the small specialists, and have a field where maybe 10 odd different engine manufacturers thrived? One can only dream..
Standarised hybrid system. Is the only way that I can find.
 

Luke Cage

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For what it's worth (less than nothing, I know), if F1 want to keep V6's, I reckon they should simplify it down to a 2.4l Twin-Turbo V6, 16,000rpm, with a standardised KERS system.

But that's just me.
 
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Nov 3, 2015
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For what it's worth (less than nothing, I know), if F1 want to keep V6's, I reckon they should simplify it down to a 2.4l Twin-Turbo V6, 16,000rpm, with a standardised KERS system.

But that's just me.
Twin turbo V6 is apparently the best format for the new LMP1 regs, so I wonder if some crossover work could be done there. LMP1 is already moving to a vaguely standardised hybrid system, although theirs will drive the front wheels rather than the transmission.
 
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InsaneOzzie

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While the likes of Ferrari and Mercedes are able to dictate to F1 and there governing bodies, the likelihood of new manufacturers joining the circus is zero. The fact the LM (liberty media) has changed their minds on the engine spec and design and remain with the current hybrid power unit is very telling imo.

Both Merc and Ferrari chance to lose multi millions in engine leases if a handful of new engine builders join the power plant frey and can offer a better financial deal to potential teams with a non hybrid spec engine.

Ferrari has made plenty of threats to Liberty over the course of the past year that they will leave F1 if things change in regards the powerplants, whether there idle threats or not, there still creating headaches for LM.

Personally, I think F1 has dug it's own hole due to the 2 dominant works teams having to much power within the engine development specs and rule making process, thanks to Bernie F1 will struggle to recover, and LM's hands are somewhat tied when it comes to major changes within the category.