The BMWCCA monthly magazine the Roundel has a piece in this month’s issue about BMWs F1 team and the technology and infrastructure behind it. One interesting note for MINI owners is the connection that the new MINI engine (and the rest of the BMW Group) has with the BMW Motorsport division responsible for the F1 effort. Here’s an excerpt:
>And what does Formula 1 yield from a technical prospective? What specific examples are there of transfer of technology from F1 to production cars? “Well specific examples would be our Formula 1 foundry, our parts manufacturing plan, and our electronics division,” says Dr. Mario Theissen, BMW Motorsport Director. “We do our own casting manufacture and machine the parts, and we do our own engine-electronics design and production, hardware and software. And the trick is that these facilities are not run by BMW Motorsports, but by by departments that do the respective road-car components. So these people have their own high-speed technology within their own departments, run by their own people, and everything that they find as an innovation for Formula 1 they can immediately transfer. So it’s not about taking over parts for performance; it’s about new technologies that exist for the automotive industry.”
>Theissen stresses developments in process and procedures as well as products. “Another example, for instance, is a joint venture,” he says. “We are doing the new MINI engines together with PSA. Our deal on the BMW side was to do prototyping, and we did these prototype engines at the Formula 1 plan, and our partners were more than surprised to see how quickly the prototype engines were available.” There are other examples of the crossover benefits of the F1 program; one notable case is the design of the V10 engine in the current M5 and M6, which was informed by BMWs Formula 1 engine experience.”
You can read more in this month’s Roundel which, sadly is not available without a BMWCCA membership. And speaking of BMW’s Formula 1 effort, a big congratulations are in order to both the team and rookie driver Robert Kubica for their 3rd place at Monza last week.