Recently, Renault F1 managing director Cyril Abiteboul came out and said that his team is producing an all-new powertrain for next year, one that doesn’t have the limitations of the current architecture.
By building not only a brand new ERS system, but also an all-new internal combustion engine, Renault hopes to finally close the gap that currently exists between the likes of Mercedes and Ferrari, and pretty much everyone else on the grid.
Yet, there is at least one skeptic out there in Red Bull driver Max Verstappen, whose team will be ditching Renault next year in favor of a Honda unit. Apparently, the fact that he no longer has to have a working relationship with the French manufacturer beyond this year, is making the young Dutchman quite chatty.
“[Catching Mercedes and Ferrari was the idea four years ago as well. And three years ago as well. And two years ago as well. It’s always the same old song. I don’t care. I’m totally not thinking about that,” said the young Red Bull star.
“I’m looking forward to the challenge we have with Honda now.”
Meanwhile, there is one current Red Bull driver who might feel very differently: Daniel Ricciardo, who has already signed on to race for Renault after this season is over.
When asked by Autosport about Renault’s recent performance drop-off as well as the all-new engine for next year, the Aussie driver didn’t seem particularly worried… yet.
“When I signed, I knew that there was work ahead but I know that they’re putting a lot of effort into making things better and expanding a lot of departments and trying to make ’19 stronger and ’20 and whatever.”
“The way the last few races have been this year… it would be nice to see them improve every race but I honestly don’t look into it too much yet. I think ’19 is a new car and it’s going to be a fresh start again, so I’m not spending too much energy on that at the moment.”