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Old 8 Oct 2019, 10:39 (Ref:3932660)   #1
Casper
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F1 Is the Epitome of Mechanical Engineering..Or Not?

Taking the premise of F1 being the epitome of mechanical engineering and leading the world in advancing automotive engineering with all this feeding down into road cars I would suggest that maybe it is not. If it was wouldn't the category be fully electric and leading the world in finding new ways to improve all electric cars.

This is not a thread to say you don't like watching electric cars race, you wouldn't own one in two million years, electric cars are a passing fad, you will commit suicide if F1 ever goes electric etc. The discussion here is that everyone holds up F1 for its technical expertise so why is it stuffing around with hybrids? Perhaps it needs to as the energy source batteries are not a mature and race ready just yet. It also could be that when the current engine regs were formulated the electric car was not seen in the way it is today.
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Old 8 Oct 2019, 10:51 (Ref:3932663)   #2
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I have to say I do miss having mechanical innovation in the sport. Nowadays it seems to be all aero. Mechanical technology is always more interesting for me
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Old 8 Oct 2019, 10:58 (Ref:3932667)   #3
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F1 is merely design and construction of a car within a set of rules, it is just finessing, the pinnacle of nothing. Road cars are ahead of F1 in pure technology terms.

Space exploration and military jets would be examples of more open fields in mechanical engineering with what is possible as the only limit, and they are subject to budgets.
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Old 8 Oct 2019, 10:59 (Ref:3932668)   #4
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Originally Posted by Casper View Post
Taking the premise of F1 being the epitome of mechanical engineering and leading the world in advancing automotive engineering with all this feeding down into road cars I would suggest that maybe it is not. If it was wouldn't the category be fully electric and leading the world in finding new ways to improve all electric cars.

This is not a thread to say you don't like watching electric cars race, you wouldn't own one in two million years, electric cars are a passing fad, you will commit suicide if F1 ever goes electric etc. The discussion here is that everyone holds up F1 for its technical expertise so why is it stuffing around with hybrids? Perhaps it needs to as the energy source batteries are not a mature and race ready just yet. It also could be that when the current engine regs were formulated the electric car was not seen in the way it is today.
Is this not asking the same question as - 'Why does F1 Need a Bespoke Power Unit' in a different format? Also - when has F1 been the epitome of mechanical engineering?

It may be the epitome of any engineering related to a Single-Seater Formula, and that will go beyond mechanical. Currently the Formula that they race to prescribes a Hybrid PU - and the engineering is the epitome of work in that field. I fear that this thread may be too focused, and is looking at F1 through the narrow lens of Power Unit only, without understanding the wider context of the sport?
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Old 9 Oct 2019, 05:18 (Ref:3932839)   #5
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Is this not asking the same question as - 'Why does F1 Need a Bespoke Power Unit' in a different format? Also - when has F1 been the epitome of mechanical engineering?

It may be the epitome of any engineering related to a Single-Seater Formula, and that will go beyond mechanical. Currently the Formula that they race to prescribes a Hybrid PU - and the engineering is the epitome of work in that field. I fear that this thread may be too focused, and is looking at F1 through the narrow lens of Power Unit only, without understanding the wider context of the sport?
I don't intend it to be that at all, I intended it to be an extension of the discussion that Abiteboul started in the last week or so. I myself think the discussion around F1 needs to be broadened a bit away from all the doom and gloom and make it a bit more interesting. There are those and Joe Saward is definitely one who take the view that F1 is everything to cars and everything good comes from it. I don't agree with that but it seems to be a wide spread POV.
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Old 9 Oct 2019, 11:05 (Ref:3932894)   #6
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Originally Posted by wnut View Post
F1 is merely design and construction of a car within a set of rules, it is just finessing, the pinnacle of nothing. Road cars are ahead of F1 in pure technology terms.

Space exploration and military jets would be examples of more open fields in mechanical engineering with what is possible as the only limit, and they are subject to budgets.
Agree. I dont think I have more to add.

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Old 9 Oct 2019, 11:10 (Ref:3932895)   #7
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To me F1 is about discovering which is the best driver / car combination in the world.

As long as the cars are designed under a set of controlling regulations, no racing series in the world is ever going to be "The Epitome of Mechanical Engineering". The nearest thing I can think of in terms of motorsport would be a land speed record attempt.
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Old 10 Oct 2019, 03:03 (Ref:3933031)   #8
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I think that F1 is far from the epitome of anything except spending money but others strongly disagree with that. In the past F1 was held up as being the leader in technology for some fairly good reasons and anyone who drove a road car in those times would most probably agree. Now road cars are so far ahead it is daylight in second place. Abiteboul certainly thinks it should be at least in the same place as road cars for some reason.
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Old 10 Oct 2019, 08:18 (Ref:3933070)   #9
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I would agree that F1 has some good engineering in a lot of areas but with the current restrictive rules it seems harder to innovate and push the boundaries.The Bloodhound project probably has more of a pioneering element but seems to have been going on forever without achieving it's stated aim.I think it could be argued that the hybrid LMP1's were more advanced in several areas.
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Old 10 Oct 2019, 08:30 (Ref:3933072)   #10
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I think that F1 is far from the epitome of anything except spending money but others strongly disagree with that. In the past F1 was held up as being the leader in technology for some fairly good reasons and anyone who drove a road car in those times would most probably agree. Now road cars are so far ahead it is daylight in second place. Abiteboul certainly thinks it should be at least in the same place as road cars for some reason.
All I can see from Abiteboul lately concentrates on the PU - and seems to be addressing the question of why does F1 run the PU it currently does?

Sadly, he seems to be giving no solution other than 'spend more on the electric part of the PU'. I'm unsure whether he is adding anything to the dilemma at the moment, aside from just stating that (in his opinion) F1 has focussed on the wrong areas for development.
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Old 10 Oct 2019, 22:50 (Ref:3933196)   #11
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It is the epitome of modern road racing, being the fastest cars out there.

FIA say the current engine formula is "the cutting edge of automotive technology development," though in the same sentence they say "while at the same time preserving the culture of innovation..." If innovation means aerodynamics within a strictly structured regime then they're right. Or perhaps they don't mean either one.

And no, electric is not the epitome of mechanical or automotive engineering, at least not in racing. Formula E has proven that with cars unable to go race distance and 'refueling' taking so long it's easier to replace the car than to refuel it.
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Old 11 Oct 2019, 10:05 (Ref:3933248)   #12
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It is the epitome of modern road racing, being the fastest cars out there.

FIA say the current engine formula is "the cutting edge of automotive technology development," though in the same sentence they say "while at the same time preserving the culture of innovation..." If innovation means aerodynamics within a strictly structured regime then they're right. Or perhaps they don't mean either one.

And no, electric is not the epitome of mechanical or automotive engineering, at least not in racing. Formula E has proven that with cars unable to go race distance and 'refueling' taking so long it's easier to replace the car than to refuel it.
Clearly you haven't watched Formula E since they stopped changing cars mid race, last December.

I neither agree nor disagree that electric is the future but it does get my goat a bit when motorsport enthusiasts don't bother to keep up with fundamental changes to rulesets, especially when (as with FE) they were outlined in the original development plan before season 1 took place.
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Old 11 Oct 2019, 10:14 (Ref:3933249)   #13
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And no, electric is not the epitome of mechanical or automotive engineering
"Electric is not the epitome of mechanical engineering" is a bizarre statement. It's the epitome of...electrical engineering.

Mechanical engineering isn't the epitome of electrical engineering either. Or cooking for that matter.

Edit to fix closing quotes.

Last edited by Akrapovic; 11 Oct 2019 at 10:42.
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Old 11 Oct 2019, 10:18 (Ref:3933250)   #14
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"Electric is not the epitome of mechanical engineering is a bizarre statement. It's the epitome of...electrical engineering.

Mechanical engineering isn't the epitome of electrical engineering either. Or cooking for that matter.
But what I think is certain is:

F1 is the epitome of F1 engineering.
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