Mercedes AMG Petronas Motorsport boss Toto Wolff has said that the German marque have ceased opposing the loss of the MGU-H component when Formula 1‘s new power unit formula changes after the 2020 World Championship.
After several Strategy Group meetings, the four-time champions have agreed to ditch the MGU-H component after being persuaded to do so. The change in specifications are searching to bring costs down and increase fan satisfaction through louder and simpler engines.
Wolff said that Mercedes have “accepted” the decision, but keep their belief that it is a “step backwards” in terms of technology.
“We have given up on some of the stand points,” Wolff said. “We have accepted to lose the MGU-H, but we think the new technology is a step backwards.
“[It succeeds] in terms of achieving compromise for the benefit of the spectacle: the revs going up, the fuel limitations going – I think we will have a louder engine, we will not be so limited by fuel.”
However, Wolff added that Mercedes are yet to be convinced over the impact the changes will have in terms of spending. The current engines will still be subject to development over the next two-and-a-half years, with manufacturers having to make progress with the new units in tandem.
“On the engine regulations we are pretty close to be able to tick the box,” the Austrian revealed.
“But the only major thing which we need to solve is spending and how to avoid spending double over the next couple of years by developing the current engine and the new one.”
The former Williams Martini Racing shareholder admitted to needing advice from his anger management specialist after losing his cool in one contentious Strategy Group meeting, where his adversaries suggested that the sport move away from hybrid technology. Wolff believes that Formula 1 “cannot close [its] eyes” to the developments in the modern motoring world.
“I had one major moment where I needed to speak to my anger management psychologist,” he laughed. “We talked about getting rid of all fuel-flow limitations that we have, all fuel allowances and just completely open it up from the get-go now.
“We cannot close our eyes to what’s happening in the world. Hybrid energy recovery systems happen on road cars, they need to happen in Formula 1 in my opinion.
“Equally we have to understand what the fan is interested in.
“It needs the technology message,” he continued.
“It cannot go without the technology message in Formula 1, but it needs to be at the level where we recognise that the spectacle is important.”