Some of the technical know-how that makes the Nissan Leaf such a remarkable EV could make Red Bull’s F1 cars a little more reliable, if not a little bit faster.
Although Red Bull has thoroughly dominated the Formula 1 season thus far, it hasn’t been able to figure out how to make its kinetic energy recovery system work reliably. Frustrated by the unending glitches, the team is turning to Nissan for help.
Red Bull, which signed a two-year partnership deal with Infiniti earlier this year, has visited Nissan’s technical center in the UK, according to British moto-mag What Car? and will send engineers to Nissan’s corporate R&D center in Japan. The remarkable Nissan Leaf proves the company knows batteries and electric drivetrains, and Red Bull wants to tap that expertise.
“As a team that’s previously been independent of a car manufacturer, it’s an exciting opportunity to have access to their research,” team boss Christian Horner said. “Our budget into battery technology is minuscule compared with Nissan’s, and they are working on developments a long way in advance of what’s commercially available today. Hopefully they can help us, and then we can help them by effectively testing their prototypes in extreme conditions.”
Sorting out the troubled kinetic energy system is but one area where Red Bull and Nissan plan to collaborate. What Car? notes in another piece that Red Bull could help Infiniti develop a crazy-fast car to challenge the hot AMG models in the Mercedes-Benz lineup.
“Our relationship with Red Bull is only five races old, but the trajectory for it is to move on and work more closely together,” said Infiniti’s motorsport honcho Simon Sproule. “One way of doing that is on a road car project.”
No details, of course, but What Car? says we could see the Red Bull-flavored Infiniti within 24 months.
We have three words for that: Oh hell yes.
Photo: Paul Gilham/Getty Images for Red Bull Racing. Sebastian Vettel during qualifying for the Spanish Grand Prix.
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