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Saturday, April 3, 2010

Renault leads calls for KERS return to Formula One

Renault is leading calls for rival teams to end resistance to Kinetic Energy Recovery Systems (KERS) returning to Formula 1 next year, because it believes such a move will benefit the sport hugely.

Opinions are currently divided between team principals about the potential return of KERS in 2011, with talks in a Formula One Teams' Association (FOTA) meeting at Sepang on Friday proving inconclusive.

However, Renault thinks that those outfits sceptical about getting it back should think more about what is best for F1 in general.

Team boss Eric Boullier believes that not only will a KERS return improve the sport's environmental considerations at a time when there are calls for it to be more 'green', but it will also help the racing if, as is hoped, its power output and use is increased from the limits imposed last year.

"Renault is aiming to have KERS back in 2011 because for us there are many interests in having this," Boullier said.

"First of all we already have the system. We have spent the money to develop KERS [for 2009], so to not use it any more is a bit of a waste of money.

"The second thing is that we do believe for the Renault car manufacturer there is a strong interest in using this technology regarding the development of hybrid technology in road cars. It also helps pass on the message that F1 is technological and environmentally friendly, which is a good message.

"On top of this, the reason we are asking for is the system to recover more energy - more than the 400KJ than the previous generation - is because it can become part of the show as well. It will clearly be an advantage to have KERS as well, and it can help overtaking."

Renault and Ferrari are the two teams pushing hardest for a KERS return for 2011, but there is resistance from a number of other teams who may feel that their own units will not be as competitive under the new more powerful limits – which could allow up to 800KJ of energy to be stored.

To counter such concerns, Boullier believes there was a chance that his team's supplier Magneti Marelli could make units available to every team – and even as a last resort the possibility of a standard supplier. There is also talk of imposing a cap on development and running costs so as not to start a spending war.

Boullier added: "We support the idea of KERS, and we can also help other teams and manufacturers who cannot get it. But now it will be a big discussion and a tough debate between the teams.

"As a manufacturer we need to have some deeper talks, because if KERS has to be back it must be a tool that every team can use. We will not run a KERS on our own, but we will support strongly an idea to propose KERS for every team because we do believe it is fitting for F1."

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