The design of the 2026 F1 Engines has now been agreed and teams are able to start committing resources to designing and building the new units. The regulations continue to be quite onerous for the teams, which is apparently to ensure that the new cars keep spectators glued to their seats.
The main impetus behind the 2026 F1 Engines has been the make the sport more environmentally friendly – if that is at all possible with carbon emitting internal combustion engines. This is not intended to sound cynical because the new regulations do make massive strides to reduce emissions.
In this article we identify the most significant changes and how we at F1 Worldwide.com believe they will impact the sport.
The Main Changes To The Engine Regulations
The following lists the main changes
- The new engines do not have an MGU-H.
- The electric motor power is increased by 300%.
- Total Horsepower is up.
- Fuel Consumption will be lower.
- An improvement in driver safety.
- The engines will cost less.
- The drivers job will be more challenging.
- Teams will still only be allowed three engines per season.
- The fuel will be 100% sustainable.
The 2026 F1 Engines Do Not Have An MGU-H
The MGU-H is a device which attached to the turbocharger. The heat and exhaust produce a rotational energy which the MGU-H converts into electricity.
The energy is stored in a battery when not required by the engine’s MGU-K (or Kinetic Motor Generator Unit).
When the driver needs to call on the system for additional power the MGU-K converts from an electrical generator into an electric motor.
It draws current from the battery which is used for short bursts of power.
This expensive and complex component was abandoned in the 2022 engines and will continue to be banned in the 2026 engine architecture.
The Power From The Electric Motor Is Increased By 300%
The power available from the MGU-K is being increased to 350kW in 2026 (compared to 120KW in 2022).
The MGU-K attaches to the crankshaft. The MGU-K operates as a generator, recovering some kinetic energy dissipated during braking.
This will have two effects on the cars performance.
- It will produce three times the power which is added to the power from the internal combustion engine.
- It will be able to charge the battery faster. More braking energy – that would otherwise be wasted – will be collected and as a result, the aim is for the MGU-K to produce around 350kW in 2026 – a massive increase on the 120kW of energy currently deployed by the MGU-K and MGU-H.
2026 F1 Engines Total Horsepower Is 1,000HP
Between the power produced by the 1.6 liter internal combustion engine and that from the resized MGU-K, the total power output will be 1,000 hp.
This is similar to the 2022 engine output, however the power is achieved by increasing the electric engine component and reducing the internal combustion engine power.
2026 F1 Engines Fuel Consumption Will Be Lower
The aim is to reduce the amount of gas which is permitted to be used in a race from 100kg (2022) down to 70kg.
The following reductions have been achieved since 2013.
2013 – 160kg
2020 – 100kg
2026 – 70kg
This rule will be one of the biggest impacts the sport has on becoming more sustainable.
2026 F1 Engines Will Result In Improved Driver Safety
Driver safety is an issue which is being constantly examined and adjusted.
One of the most significant changes being made in 2026 is that the following components are being enclosed in the drivers safety cell.
- The battery.
- The control electronics.
The 2026 F1 Engines Will Cost Less
With the elimination of the MGU-H and a greater use of common parts supply, the intention is to reduce the drive away cost of the 2026 engine.
The Drivers Job Will Be More Challenging
the 2026 engine will have similar performance to the 2022 engines and will continue to use a high-power, high-revving V6 internal combustion engines.
This will keep the performance similar to the modern car to keep the race ability alive.
However, with the omission of the MGU-H there is a chance that the driver will have to contend with turbo lag which will make planning maneuvers more challenging.
Teams Will Still Only Be Allowed Three Engines Per Season
Constructors will remain limited to using three power units per car, per season.
The Fuel Will Be 100% Sustainable
The FIA is working hard with teams and gas suppliers to make it the fuel 100% sustainable for 2026.
The Summary Of The 2026 F1 Engines Rule Changes
The following table summarizes the current regulations against the new 2026 rules.
|Item||2020 Power Unit||2026 power unit|
|Horsepower||+- 1,000 HP||1,000 HP|
|ICE||V6 1.6l||V6 1.6l|
|MGU-H||Harvested unlimited energy|
|MGU-K||Enclosed In Engine Bay||Enclosed in safety Cell|
|MGU-K||120 kw||350 kw|
|Fuel Mix||10% Ethanol, 90% Fossil||100% Sustainable|
|Engine Dino||9 Test Benches (300 Hours)||700 hours 2026|
400 hours 2027 – 2030
|ICE test bench||200 hours 2022|
1130 hours 2023 – 2024
|500 hours 2026|
400 hours 2027 – 2030
|No of engines||3 per season||4 per season 2026|
3 per season 2027 – 2030
(ICE Plus Hybrid)
|850 hp , 160 hp||530 hp, 470 hp|
|Energy Recovery||MGU-K, MGU-H||MGU-K|
The FIA World Motor Sport Council has approved the new power unit regulations which will become effective in 2026.
While maintaining similar levels of power the engines will use increased electrical power and use 100% sustainable fuels.