Honda releases first image of new V6 turbo power unit
Honda has released the first image of its 2015 power unit ahead of this weekend's Japanese Grand Prix.
Honda will return to F1 as a power unit supplier for McLaren next year and this weekend in Suzuka will show off video and audio of its new V6 turbo for the first time. McLaren has said it is its cars might run with Honda engines before pre-season testing next year, but a date has not yet been set.
"Working toward Honda's F1 participation starting in the 2015 season, development of the power unit is entering its prime phase at our R&D facility in Sakura (Tochigi, Japan), where we transferred our automobile motor sports development earlier this year," Yasuhisa Arai, Senior Managing Officer of Honda R&D, said. "In addition to conducting simulations, we have moved onto the next stage where we conduct full-fledged bench tests of the engine while connecting the turbocharger and energy recovery systems.
"In the meantime, our racing operation base in Milton Keynes, United Kingdom, has become fully operational. At this time, we are unveiling an image of our power unit that is under development. The whole team is concentrating on this development, getting ready for the forthcoming start of F1 participation in 6 months. Please stay tuned for further updates."
The Honda website gives little detail about the new power unit, although diagrams explaining how the current generation of hybrid engines work shows a conventional layout of the turbocharger in line with Renault and unlike Mercedes' successful split turbine and compressor. However, an actual photo of the engine has not been released so the secrets of the Honda power unit are likely to remain just that until the start of next season.