F1: Honda expecting performance boost with new turbo partnership
By Chris Medland | RACER magazine and RACER.com F1 correspondent
Honda expects to see “a notable step up in performance” in 2019 as part of a strengthened partnership with Japanese company IHI Corporation.
The two companies, who have worked together on turbocharger development since Honda’s return to Formula 1 in 2015, announced an updated two-year technical partnership on Tuesday regarding the development and supply of turbo-related components. The new deal comes into effect from 2019 onward, with Honda gearing up to supply both Red Bull and Toro Rosso next season.
Honda’s chief officer of brand and communication operations Katsuhide Moriyama says the stronger collaboration should have a clear impact on power unit performance in the future.
“IHI is well established in the field of rotating machinery technology, which it has developed through its shipbuilding and steam turbine business, which was established back in the 19th century,” Moriyama said. “We expect this partnership to produce a notable step up in performance. Together, we will keep pushing to fight for wins.”
IHI’s Yoshinori Kawasaki references Honda’s dominant years in partnership with McLaren 30 years ago as the yardstick for performance.
“We are happy to enter into this partnership with Honda, one of the best engine manufacturers in the world,” Kawasaki said. “Through this new technical partnership, our aim is for the Honda PU to deliver the best possible performance, by accelerating development of the turbocharger
Toro Rosso Honda engineers on the grid during the Brazilian Grand Prix. (Image by Hone/LAT)
“We hope that as from the 2019 season, Honda’s Power Unit, using the IHI turbocharger, will deliver the sort of performance that thrilled motor sport fans back in the 80s and 90s.”
Honda has yet to score a podium finish in the four seasons to date since returning to F1, with a best result of fourth place achieved with Toro Rosso in Bahrain this year.
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