Domenicali: F1 engines will be louder in 2026

Formula 1 CEO Stefano Domenicali says the sport is hopeful that its engines will be louder than the current specification in three years’ time.

A new cycle of regulations will come into play in 2026 with major changes being made to the power units, including a boost in electrical power.

F1 will also use fully sustainable fuels and the specifications have attracted the interest of manufacturers, with six signed up for the 2026 campaign.

Since the turbo-hybrid era began in 2014, fans and drivers have often commented on the lack of noise produced by the engines compared to previous years.

But Domenicali says that F1’s engines going forward will not be noiseless: “No, very clearly, no,” he told the Australian radio station 3AW.

“We need to have a different sound. It’s music for my ears. It’s true that we had the 12 cylinders, it was a different frequency, very loud. And then 10, eight, six – it’s not [going] again down.

“It’s just the situation is different. Of course we need to be hybrid, we’re going to be hybrid for the future. 

“But the intention is to make sure in the new regulation the engine [noise] itself will be higher because that’s part of our emotion. 

“It is really what our fans want to hear and that’s the duty for us to commit to that.”

Despite increasing its electrical output by almost three-fold in 2026, Domenicali says that F1 is not looking to turn completely electric in the future. 

“I don’t think so. Formula 1 is not electric. As you know, there is anyone [series] that has taken that direction. Electrification is a choice of mobility that has to go in that direction. 

“But the mobility world and the mobility landscape will follow different directions. We have taken the direction of using for the future sustainable fuels with hybrid engines. 

“That’s where we believe we’re going to stay for many, many years.” 

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