New Renault PU worth 0.3s, but won’t use it

Date published: August 29 2018

Renault: New C-Spec engine ready

Renault’s new C-Spec engine is worth 0.3 seconds a lap at Monza, but the Enstone team won’t be using it themselves.

The new Renault power unit is a “significant” upgrade, but concerns about reliability means they will be sticking to the B-Spec engine in their fight for P4 in the Constructors’ Championship.

“The C Spec is an evolution of the current B Spec engine,” Renault’s engine technical director Remi Taffin said. “It’s significantly more powerful.

“Conversely, it’s possibly not as reliable as the current generation, hence the different choices made by each team.

“Depending on fuel used, the power gain is in the order of 0.3s per lap in qualifying on a circuit like Monza, which is a substantial step forward.”

Renault boss Cyril Abiteboul explained further as to why they won’t be implementing the C-Spec engine.

“We will not use it at Renault,” Abiteboul told Motorsport.com.

“Basically what we are doing is discussing with our customers who wants it. So it’s available, and it’s a step in power.

“It’s coming with a couple of additional reliability risks, so basically we are leaving it up to the discretion of each team whether they want or or not, based on their sensitivity to the trade-off between power and reliability.

“At Renault we are more concerned about what’s going on behind us, and therefore the risk of reliability, and an extra one tenth or two tenths is not going to make a difference because we are not going to catch Red Bull.

“Red Bull, they have nothing to worry about, nothing to lose, and that’s why the sensitivity and the bias is slightly different.”

Red Bull are set to fit the C-Spec power unit to both cars at the Italian Grand Prix, with Daniel Ricciardo poised to start from the back of the grid with engine penalties.

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