British F4 single-seaters to trial hybrid technology with tests in 2020

Stephen Lickorish
British F4 single-seaters to trial hybrid technology
British F4 single-seaters to trial hybrid technology

British Formula 4 will spend the next year testing and developing a hybrid engine in partnership with Ford as it looks to introduce electric power into the championship.

The series has fitted Ford's latest one-litre three-cylinder EcoBoost engine along with a 48-volt mild-hybrid system to one of its Mygale chassis, ahead of a major evaluation programme that will be conducted in 2020.

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Depending on how the testing goes, the aim is to then introduce the technology into the category in the future.

At present, Formula 1 is the only single-seater championship to feature hybrid engines, although the new Olympics-style Motorsport Games event will include hybrid-powered F4 cars.

British F4 single-seaters to trial hybrid technology
British F4 single-seaters to trial hybrid technology

"I'm delighted to see electrification now combined with continued development of EcoBoost technology within the F4 British Championship, with this mild hybrid project being the latest advancement," said Gerard Quinn, Ford Performance Europe's senior manager.

"Consistent with what we have done in this grassroots level of motor racing for the past 50 years, we have brought our mainstream engine technology to the race track.

"The engine itself crosses the entire Ford range - with the recent launch of the Transit Custom Plug-In Hybrid, the power unit can now be found powering everything from passenger cars through to commercial vehicles."

If introduced, there is the potential for cars to be powered solely be electricity when in the pitlane or moving around the paddock.

It is not the first UK series to evaluate the use of hybrids, with the British Touring Car Championship set to feature Cosworth-designed hybrid power units from 2022, replacing the use of success ballast to balance performance between cars.

British F4 single-seaters to trial hybrid technology
British F4 single-seaters to trial hybrid technology

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