New Scuderia Ferrari boss Frederic Vasseur has strongly denied speculation regarding the fact that the Maranello team has been able to find solid gains for their 2023 engine, following speculation that was reported by the media during the last few weeks, which indicated an increase of 30bhp for the Ferrari power unit next season.
While rivals Mercedes and Red Bull are also expected to bring a more powerful engine for 2023 and are rumoured to have found more performance, but are keeping his cards close to his chest, Frederic Vasseur laughed off the rumours and described them as being a “joke”, in his first press conference as Ferrari boss, after starting his activity in Maranello:
“Regarding the engine, the numbers – I don’t know where those numbers are coming from but it’s just a joke,” – the Frenchman explained, when asked by the journalists about the Ferrari power unit for the 2023 Formula One championship.
Ferrari improves power unit reliability following last year’s technical failures
As the 2026 Formula 1 rules and regulations have been finalized and much of the focus is already shifted to the new generation of engines, the sport is currently in a power unit development ‘freeze’. However, the current rules still allow teams to make changes to the engines for reliability reasons.
Updates therefore can be introduced for increasing the reliability of power unit parts, something Ferrari had to work on due to the technical failures suffered during the 2022 Formula One campaign: nine retirements, including a double DNF at the Baku City Circuit in the Azerbaijan Grand Prix.
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Yet Frederic Vasseur remains cautions and points out that any reliability and performance gains will not be clear until the Maranello team take to the track at the Bahrain International Circuit for the winter pre-season testing session, which takes place one week before the first round of the 2023 Formula 1 championship:
“We have made some step [for power unit], but it’s just about reliability. I think the performance last year was not an issue at all, but the issue was the reliability and the first target is to fix it. So far it looks okay, but the reality on the track is a different perspective. I think that a couple of issues that the team suffered [from], and its not only true for Ferrari in terms of reliability, are also coming from the bouncing and vibration. Everybody will have a much better picture in Bahrain.” – Frederic Vasseur concluded.