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Mercedes: F1 automakers 'will not be blackmailed'

2015-11-24 11:47

NEW POWER UNITS: Teams are arguing bitterly over the proposed new 'parallel' engine regulations for 2017. Image: AP / Silvia Izquierdo

Paris - The battle over the future of Formula 1 will move to Paris, France on Tuesday.

It is there that the strategy group will meet, pitting Bernie Ecclestone and the governing FIA against the powerful car manufacturers.

They are arguing bitterly over the proposed new 'parallel' engine regulations for 2017, after Ilmor and AER lodged their interest in supplying a new twin-turbo 2.5 litre V6.

Controlling automakers

Small teams struggling to pay $30-million bills for their current 'power units' may be interested.

Bild reports that cash-strapped Force India, Sauber and Manor are all now asking Ecclestone for an advance in their official prize money.

Also interested in the 'client engine' idea is Red Bull, desperate to escape the control of the automakers.

Franz Tost, boss of the Red Bull-owned Toro Rosso team, said the 2.5 litre engine will cost less, give teams some freedom, and the fans something louder to hear trackside.

He said:"I think that most of the fans want to have another engine with a better sound."

Germany's Bild newspaper, however, thinks Ecclestone-Todt against the automakers is actually all about politics and control.

It claims: "The four current manufacturers and engine suppliers agree 100%, and will argue and vote against the new low-cost engine".

Counter-proposal from automakers

It is rumoured Mercedes, Ferrari, Renault and Honda will submit a counter-proposal during Tuesday meeting: an offer to increase Todt's proposed engine price limit from 12 to 16 million euros.

Sport Bild reports that the FIA president may have his own carrot to dangle: a proposal to extend the current 'power unit' regulations from 2020 - when they are currently set to expire - until 2025.

Todt confirmed: "A stable regulatory framework is important so that other manufacturers can come into formula one."

Some insiders regard the suggestion of 'parallel' rules as obviously unworkable and actually only a bargaining chip to frighten the automakers into submission.

Wolff told Bild: "We can definitely talk but we will not be blackmailed."


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