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F1 fans to hear Merc's 'megaphone' exhaust

2014-05-14 08:50

MERC TO TEST F1 TRUMPET: Mercedes will replace its current exhaust with a metre-long trumpet attachment. Image: AFP/JOSEP LAGO

BARCELONA, Spain -  Disgruntled Formula 1 fans will be able to hear Mercedes' 'megaphone' exhaust for the first time on Wednesday (May 14) as a post-Spanish GP test.

The first images of a metre-long, trumpet-like attachment have already emerged, reports Bild. The exhaust will be fitted to Nico Rosberg's car during testing.


One of the first to see the volume-boosting device was Bild correspondent Nicola Pohl: "It is extremely light, about 1.5kg. Before the funnel end there is a small hole."

Pohl and the 'megaphone' can be seen here!

Some are looking forward to hearing a "loud" F1 car once again, following widespread criticism of the mild tone of the 2014 turbo V6 power units.


Others are not happy that F1 is artificially increasing the sound of its new power units.
Former McLaren and Ferrari driver, Gerhard Berger, said: "It's crazy to talk about making an F1 car louder. The whole discussion is nonsense."

The International Automobile Federation, however, is serious about the change and is working with sound experts to resolve the sound issue with F1's three engine suppliers - Mercedes, Ferrari and Renault.

Renault's deputy managing director, Rob White, said: "The FIA has some acoustic consultants who have visited us and have had access to our existing dyno test results, including sound measurements."

White's boss Jean-Michel Jalinier insisted F1 should not be ashamed of its more efficient - and therefore quieter - engine technology.


Michel Jalinier said: "You just have to move with the times. It's no longer the time for a V10 or V8 using 60 litres of fuel every 100km."

The more docile noise produced by an F1 car in 2014 is a tribute to its brand new and impressive technology.

White said: "It (the 2014 'power unit') uses less energy.  It does so more efficiently so there's less falling out of the back as noise. I don't sign up to the opinion they sound horrible. I feel there is a positive message that has kind of got drowned out."

White told the British The Daily Mail he is not closing his ears to the calls for more noise, but there are paddock rumblings that Mercedes' rivals are skeptical the 'megaphone' exhaust might add performance to the German team's already-dominant car.

White said: "My short term concern is we mustn't be put in a situation where we take a performance hit relative to our competitors, directly or indirectly as a result of this subject."

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