Expect unreliability with 2014 engines, says Prost


Four-times world champion Alain Prost says it is likely the new engines being introduced in Formula One next year will lead to more retirements.

The V8 engines which have been used in F1 since 2006 will be replaced with 1.6-litre turbocharged engines next year.

Prost, who won three world championships with turbocharged engines, told Autosport: “For sure we are going to have some reliability problems, in the beginning especially.”

As well as the reintroduction of turbocharged engines, last seen in 1988, F1 teams will have to get to grips with complex new energy recovery systems.

“We all need to accept that sometimes it is going to be a problem,” said Prost. “The public will understand it is a new technology and it is not reliable, but slowly they will see that you get the performance, the reliability, the fuel consumption.”

Prost added it was good for F1 that another manufacturer will rejoin the sport in the shape of Honda, who he won the 1989 championship with while driving for McLaren. McLaren and Honda will reunite in 2015.i

During last season car failures accounted for 7.7% of all failures to finish a race by a driver. In 1993, Prost’s final season in the sport, it was 24.0%.

NEOM McLaren Formula E announces Jake Hughes will join Rene Rast for 2023 season

McLaren Formula E Hughes
McLaren Racing

Doubling down on their commitment to electric auto sports, McLaren Racing announced Jake Hughes will join Rene Rast to compete in the 2023 Formula E Series (FE), which completes their driver lineup.

The NEOM McLaren FE team was formed by the acquisition of the Mercedes-EQ Formula E team that won the 2021 and 2022 championships with Stoffel Vandoorne and Nyck de Vries behind the wheel.

“Today’s announcement feels like a long time coming,” said Ian James, managing director of NEOM McLaren Electric Racing in a release. “Since May this year, when we first announced McLaren Racing’s entry into Formula E, we have been working tirelessly to get in place the best possible team and structure for sustainable success.

“On the one hand, we have been working on the retention of the amazing talent that already was in place before going into the transitional phase. I’m proud to say I think we’ve done a great job on that front.

“On the other hand, we have been focusing on putting in place new processes and new talent – and the latter includes the drivers.”

The driver lineup clasps the two hands together.

Hughes brings 10 years racing experience in single seater cars, including a role with the acquired Mercedes-EQ team as a reserve and development driver for the past two seasons. He is the 2013 BRDC Formula 4 champion and has multiple wins in Formula 2, including two in 2020.

Announced in August, Rast joins the team after earning two podium finishes and six top-fives in 22 career Formula E starts for Audi Sport ABT before returning to the DTM Series last year. Rast’s best finish in Formula E came in the Puebla E Prix when he finished second to teammate Lucas di Grassi by less than a half second.

McLaren’s commitment to Formula E comes one year after they entered the Extreme E rally series in 2022 with Tanner Foust and Emma Gilmour in the driver lineup. After a modest start to the season, the McLaren XE drivers crossed the finish line first in Round 4 in Chile, but were assessed a time penalty that dropped them to fifth. Last week in the season finale in Uruguay, they held onto a hard-earned second place finish.