F1, Mercedes shakes Williams, Aston Martin and McLaren: Wolff wants to cut a customer team

The Mercedes F1 team principal has clear ideas: providing power units is less cost-effective than in the past. That is why one of the three customers could be left on foot

The budget cap could also lead to unwanted effects for the organizers of the Formula 1 World Championship. the big manufacturers are all in agreement in increasing the funds, but the small ones are opposed – the new financial regulations introduced in 2021 risk causing one of the teams on the grid to lose… the power unit. This is confirmed by Toto Wolff, who confessed to considering the hypothesis of cutting at least one of the three Mercedes engine supplies to the customer teams.

SUPPLIERS OF F1 ENGINES AND THE CAP

The problem would consist in the fact that, with the introduction of the new financial regulation aimed at protecting above all the small stables, which entered into liquidity crisis with the Covid-19 pandemic, the FIA ​​has imposed a controlled price on the motorists for the supply of power. together with the customer teams. In short, adjusting the revenues deriving from the sale of engines has become less advantageous in economic terms, in the face of a high technological effort to produce all the necessary components and spare parts. The game would therefore be worth the candle less than in previous years and this explains Mercedes’ willingness to cut (at least) one of its customers. In a nutshell, one of McLaren, Williams and Aston Martin could soon find herself forced to look for a new technical partner.

SPEAK TOTO WOLFF

“Unfortunately, the business of supplying engines to other teams – explained Mercedes garage number one, Toto Wolff – is no longer as engaging and interesting as it once was, because the FIA ​​has imposed a limit price to protect small teams”. And if, until last season, producing extra components did not seem to put the engineers of Brixworth (where the Stuttgart power unit F1 power unit is based) in great trouble, the fact that in 2022 Mercedes found itself having to chase title rivals doesn’t help: “Rather than having six customer cars in the future, I’d rather we could go further in development while assembling two fewer power units. Cutting a customer also means producing far fewer spare parts and, in an ideal world, it would be perfect to have only two teams to supply, lightening the load a little “.

WHICH SCENARIOS?

It is difficult to say now whether or not these words are a way to put pressure on the vote on the increase in the budget cap. What is certain is that, in the event that Mercedes retires with one of the three customer teams, Renault would also be involved, which, as an engineer with fewer supplies – only the official team of the group, the Alpine, is pushed. from the French engine – by regulation it would be forced to sell a power unit to the team left without. A situation that could therefore upset current relations on the grid even before the arrival of Porsche and Audi, who will enter F1 as an engine supplier starting from 2026. But it is not certain that Wolff and Mercedes want to wait in this way. long…



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