Renault has unveiled its vision of how an F1 car could look in 10 years' time — with it adamant that the sport should have a greater focus on drivers.
The French car manufacturer used the Shanghai motor show to unveil its concept R.S. 2027 — a 600-kg (1,322-lbs) closed-cockpit car that produces 1,340 hp (1,000 kW) to deliver a power-to-weight ratio never seen before in the sport.
A four-wheel drive car, with four-wheel steering, it would be powered by a small internal combustion engine, but will be boosted by larger battery systems that are almost five times as powerful as those currently used in F1.
Renault believes that, despite road car technology being set to advance greatly in the next few years, it is important that F1 remains about the driver.
That is why, even with a closed-cockpit design, drivers would race in a transparent cockpit with a transparent helmet so fans can observe them in action.
The R.S. 2017 would feature active LED lighting to boost its aesthetics, as well as moveable aerodynamic parts such an active wings.
On the safety front, as well as the canopy, the car would be fitted with two titanium "pop-up" roll-over bars that are activated in the event of an accident.
As well as the concept idea for the car, Renault has talked about ways F1 itself can change too.
Among its ideas are that fans would have greater access to the car’s telemetry, and that there would be fan-boost available to help drivers in the closing stages of races.
Furthermore, it suggests the format of grand prix weekends could change – with a grand prix split into two events. There would be a long race of 250km, plus a shorter sprint known as the ‘Final Sprint’.
Weekends would also feature a night rookie race, which would run on Friday evenings for teams’ reserve and young drivers.
Renault F1 managing director Cyril Abiteboul said: “One role of Renault Sport Racing is to anticipate the future of Formula 1 so that it draws a maximum number of fans in an environment consistent with Groupe Renault’s objectives.
“We look forward to generating inspired conversations with the racing community, fans and enthusiasts through this concept that highlights our ideas and desires.”
Gallery: Renault R.S. 2027 Vision concept
R.S. 2027 Vision embodies Renault’s vision of Formula 1 in 2027: Greater focus on the drivers, more spectacular, more electric, safer racing.
Aided by 40 years of experience in Formula 1, Renault has outlined a vision of what racing’s premier series might look like in 2027:
- A more human-centric championship with drivers at the heart of the sport, as illustrated by a transparent cockpit and a transparent helmet that allow the drivers to be seen in the heat of the action.
- A more spectacular show, with active LED lighting incorporated into the wheels and moving aerodynamic parts such as the car’s active wings.
- Safer racing thanks to an autonomous mode that can be activated in the case of an accident, along with an ultra-resistant polycarbonate cockpit canopy to protect against impact.
- More extensive interaction between the cars and greater connection with spectators. Fans will be able to view the telemetry data of their favourite driver for example.
- Ultra-high-performance racing that benefits from Groupe Renault’s expertise in the realms of four-wheel drive, four-wheel steering and very high-energy density batteries.
- An even more environmentally-respectful form of Formula 1, with the fuel tank capacity halved in the space of 10 years, plus a full-electric mode for use along the pit lane.
- The R.S. 2027 Vision also features the C-shaped lighting signature that has become a familiar hallmark of Renault’s road vehicles.
“One role of Renault Sport Racing is to anticipate the future of Formula 1 so that it draws a maximum number of fans in an environment consistent with Groupe Renault’s objectives. We look forward to generating inspired conversations with the racing community, fans and enthusiasts through this concept that highlights our ideas and desires.” Cyril Abiteboul, Managing Director, Renault Sport Racing.