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Sunday, April 07, 2019


Float like a Cadillac, Sting like a beemer!

A famous line from the movie ‘Cars’ by a renowned franchise – The Walt Disney Company, who made all the kids and race car fans sob tears of happiness and dream that one day they can be a race car driver too. Well, this might seem a little out of context, but it is the dream part which keeps all the people associated with motorsports on their toes and keeps innovating their way to a better future. And since we are talking about motorsports, why not take something which defines the epitome of engineering – the one and only, Formula 1.

Since its inception in 1950, Formula 1 has become the world’s most exciting auto racing competition. Their cars race at speeds that go all the way up to 360 km/h, but F1 is not only about going faster: it is also about endurance, security and innovation. An F1 car can go from 0 to 160kmph and back to 0 in just FOUR seconds! The average cost of an F1 car for 1 day is more than ₹ 53 Crores. Bear in mind that it is the price of the most basic components. It doesn’t include hundreds of millions spent on development and research. It’s quite a pricey machine.

Now the big question is, how are we, people who drive a Honda Civic or Toyota Prius or maybe a high-end Ferrari or a Merc, benefitting from a rich sport which makes its cars go round and round on the track? 

  To start off, let us talk about efficiency. An engine for a normal car delivers roughly around 29% Thermal Efficiency which is way below what it is capable of because a Formula 1 car using the ‘similar V6 engine’ can give you 44% of thermal efficiency. In layman terms, thermal efficiency for an engine is defined as converting the thermal power from burning of the fuel into work, which in this case is running the engine. The cars these days are coming with better power figures and more longevity which is the sole mission of Motorsports.

  There’s a high-end technology called Automatic Transmission. Well, yes, one can easily guess that it changes gears automatically for you. And then there are Clutchless Manual Transmission, more commonly known as Paddle Shifters, which doesn’t need a clutch to shift gears. Again it might sound like a normal thing, but in a Formula 1 car, this techy thing lets you change gear in 30 to 50 milliseconds. Yes! In a normal car, 50 milliseconds pass by the time you touch the gear knob. And the good news is, the same technology is being used in most of our affordable high-end cars.

  How about the futuristic cars designs that we are seeing these days. You think Automotive manufacturers are using them just to make their cars look good. It is the courtesy of another motorsport concept, which is the usage of ‘DESIGN AND ANALYSE’ by Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) which is a design engineer’s only true love. It allows you to run specific models and tells you how your car will behave in every earthly condition ever.   

The list can go on and on from Kinetic Energy Recovery System which converts heat energy released from brakes to a more usable form, Traction Control, Tire Dynamics, Brake Materials, Lighter Body Weight, Aerodynamically Efficient Cars to what not! The so-called Hierarchy is not only restricted to an organisation’s work order, but it also goes for the technological flow too. From the very best of motorsports to the most practical part of road cars.  

Now both the cars below, might not Ka-Chow to you, but they sure as hell break every limit out there and are designed to make your lives happier!
formula 1 car

NOTE: The views expressed here are those of the author's and not necessarily represent or reflect the views of DoT Club as a whole.

1 comment:

  1. A Well written engaging one I would say 👍