KUALA LUMPUR: Petronas, which supplies fuel and lubricant to the Mercedes AMG Petronas F1 Team, will have bigger expectations to meet due to the new engine rules in place for next year.
Reliability will be crucial in 2018 with the introduction of a rule limiting teams to three power units.
The grid will have to rely on three engines to last the full 21 Grand Prix season but Petronas general manager (brand management department) Afiza Mohd Yusof (pic) is confident “we will rise to the challenge”.
“For us, it is really about developing the technology. We already have the fuel technology and fuel engineers seconded to the team. So we will continue to develop our product further.
“This year marks 22 years of Petronas’ involvement in motorsports with Formula One, so want to continue with the winning formula.
“It’s going to be challenging for us because we have won the constructors’ championships for the last four years (2014-2017). The challenge is not for the winning team but also for the people on the street who use our products.
“Our commitment is to give them the best product,” she said.
Petronas recently signed a new deal in May to continue supporting Mercedes until 2020.
Four-time world champion Lewis Hamilton also complimented Petronas for always pushing the limits of technology.
“Reliability is a key part in our sport, the engine is the heart of our car and the fluids (lubricants, fuels) are its blood.
“I finished every single lap this year because of Petronas and it’s what helped me win this title.
“Next year, we will only have three engines (instead of four) and there will be even more pressure on Petronas to advance its winning formula.
“We have already gone leaps and bounds (in terms of reliability) but with one engine fewer next year, it will be a challenge as each engine will have to last about 9,000km, which is crazy,” said the Briton.