SAKHIR, Bahrain (AP) — Formula One commercial chief Bernie Ecclestone said he expects to get agreement to change the sport’s “unacceptable” engine rules, despite leading team Mercedes opposing any alteration.
Ferrari and Red Bull have led the charge against the sport’s new fuel limits that restrict usage to 100 kilograms per car per race, with the flow never exceeding more than 100 kilograms per hour. The muted sound of the new 1.6 liter V6 turbo hybrid engines has also attracted criticism.
“They can do something about the noise, and they need another 10 kilos of fuel or something,” Ecclestone said Sunday ahead of the Bahrain Grand Prix. “Everybody will agree to that.”
Any agreement from Mercedes will be difficult to achieve, as the team has dominated the early part of the 2014 season, and its engine customer teams have also largely outperformed those powered by Ferrari or Renault.
Mercedes team principal Toto Wolff slammed any attempt to change the rules midseason.
“Some engine manufacturers or teams are saying we have not managed to make the car efficient and fast with 100kg (of fuel), so what we are trying to do is let’s add 10kg,” Wolff said.
“Well, sorry they didn’t do their job in the way we have done. I find this whole discussion absurd.”
Ecclestone said any change to the rules was not designed to bring Mercedes back to the field, and denied it would harm the team.
“We can do things without them particularly losing their advantage,” Ecclestone said.
“Without any doubt they have done a better job and they shouldn’t be punished for that. We shouldn’t change the regulations to punish them.”
Ecclestone, head of the sport’s commercial rights holder, does not directly have the authority to change rules. That must be done through the sport’s governing body, the FIA.