For Ferrari, 2020 was a year to forget and with restrictions currently in place on development for 2021, it doesn't look like they will be able to compete with the top teams again. Logically, the focus is already partly on 2022, when many new rules will be introduced. According to rumours, Ferrari wants to shake up Formula 1 next year with a revolutionary engine concept.
The engine for 2021 will be an upgraded version of the 2020 engine, but it remains to be seen whether it will be enough to get back to the front of the race. Ferrari itself has also said that expectations should not be too high this year. In that sense, 2022 feels like a new start for the team and innovative concepts are necessary to achieve that.
Sources at Motorsport.com report that Ferrari is taking a risk with an innovative power unit that, if it works, could be a game-changer in the sport. This is the result of the work of Wolf Zimmermann, who has been tasked with developing a new engine concept that should form the basis of a new era of cars.
The Mercedes route
The site writes that Ferrari is adopting an idea from Mercedes, which is to separate the compressor from the engine. Mercedes did this a while back and Honda too switched to that concept a few years ago. Both elements are now on the gearbox side of the car, but from 2022, these elements should be on both sides of the Ferrari, connected by an shaft.
That's the first step, and while it's not necessarily new, Ferrari would like to take the idea a step further by placing the compressor in the six-cylinder intake box with an entirely new arrangement for the intercooler. This should bring more power and new aerodynamic opportunities as the engine layout becomes more compact.
Scaling back the engine size would also reduce weight, which would help the centre of gravity as well as any ballast. The idea poses many challenges, but if it works out well, it will provide more power and improve reliability. In conclusion, Motorsport.com states that Ferrari is keen to make the most of the opportunities offered by the 2022 regulations.