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Formula One Car Specifications

American Government Special Collections Reference Desk

Open Wheel Racing Topics:  Formula One

Formula One Car Specifications

Marvyn H.
October 23, 2005

The FIA (the governing body of motorsport) has made quite a few changes to the technical regulations of F1 cars. Some of these will be in effect as early as the start of the 2006 season and the rest will only come into play in 2008. For more on Formula One click here.
Here are some of the more interesting specs that have changed:

The weight of the entire vehicle, including the driver, must now not be less than 550kg. This has been decreased from 605kg.
The engines have been down-sized to 2.4 litre V8 motors with 4 valves per cylinder. The minimum number of gears for these cars is 4 and the maximum is 7. The wheel width at the front of all cars must be between 390mm and 450mm with the width at the rear being between 490mm and 505mm. The overall weight of the engine must be at least 95kg.

The FIA have given a concession to manufacturers and teams not ready with their new engines saying they will allow them to use other engines (such as the V10 engines currently being used) with the performance decreased; obviously this will be controlled by the FIA and no-one else.
All cars must now be fitted with a starter which the driver must be capable of using to start the engine from his seated position. This should cut out some of those embarrasing failed starts to GP's for some drivers.
From 2008 the FIA will choose 1 tyre manufacturer to supply all the teams. This is a dramatic change and should increase the excitement value by levelling the playing field a bit; it's a real pity they could only get this in from 2008.
Pit to car telemetry will be prohibited so the team will not be able to fix any gremlins from the pit-wall and all voice radio communication must be open and accessible to both the FIA and the broadcasters.
No competitor can carry out more than 30,000km of testing during a year.

Some interesting changes here, I sincerely hope it increases the competitiveness and excitement of this sport because it needs it.

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