Alpine has worked hard over the off-season to extract additional power from Renault’s Formula 1 power unit for the 2024 F1 season.
Last year, the team sought an exemption from the FIA during the ongoing ‘engine freeze’ period, hoping to bridge the gap to its stronger competitors, including Ferrari, Mercedes, and Honda.
Unfortunately for Alpine, the FIA turned down their appeal, leaving Renault to look forward to the comprehensive engine regulation changes set for 2026 for any significant improvements.
Despite this setback, Alpine’s technical director Matt Harman has acknowledged that the team has pushed the boundaries of the current regulations to enhance the engine’s performance for 2024 as much as possible.
“The exhaust has now been routed between the pivot points of the rear suspension on the gearbox housing,” he told Germany’s specialist Auto Motor und Sport.
“As a result, the pipe is now straighter, which reduces the back pressure. We also are not cooling the exhaust, which means that the gases have more energy. That should also deliver performance.”
At Enstone, the team has also rearranged the packaging of the existing power unit components – including the battery being moved further rearwards for better balance.
And designers were also tasked with slashing the weight of the total transmission package.
Harman warned: “Of course you want to stay below the weight limit, but if you save too much, you’re not using the available mass to generate performance.”