A1 Grand Prix car
The A1 Grand Prix car was a vehicle designed to compete in the A1 Grand Prix. The car was standardised for every team to provide a level playing field for competing nations. It was designed to reduce the volume of "dirty air", allowing drivers to close in on the car in front, encouraging overtaking. The bodywork was mainly pre-impregnated carbon fibre composites. From 2008–09 Ferrari was consulted on the design and manufacture for all A1 Grand Prix cars.
Lola-Zytek car (2005–06 to 2007–08)Edit
The Lola B05/52 was the spec car used by the series from the 2005–06 season to the 2007–08 season. It was powered by Zytek engines, and ran on Cooper tyres. The former chassis is now used in the Euroseries 3000, starting in 2009.
The chassis, designated Lola A1GP, is made and designed by Lola Cars. The A1 Car's carbon fibre skin cloaks a core of aluminium honeycomb. Based on bionic engineering principles found in nature, the hexagonal honeycomb provides remarkable strength for its weight, and has progressive deformation properties in response to an impact, which contributes to driver safety. In addition, drivers are protected by FIA-approved side intrusion panels that protect them from lateral impacts.
The engine for the cars was developed by Zytek Engineering. The 3.4-litre V8 unit is capable of delivering 520 bhp (550 bhp in PowerBoost mode). Each engine must be very durable, as it must last a whole season. The engine only weighs 120 kilograms, making it one of the lightest 3.4-litre engines ever made.
The car has an overall length of 4833 mm, with a long wheelbase of 3000 mm and a wide track of 1476 mm (front) and 1468 mm (rear). Its total weight amounts to 615 kilograms, without the driver and the fuel.
- Engine type: ZA1348
- Configuration: 90 degree V8
- Displacement: 3400 cc
- Width: 619 mm
- Height: 542 mm
- Length: 543 mm
- Weight: 120 kg
- Cylinder block: Sand cast aluminium alloy
- Cylinder head: Sand cast aluminium alloy
- Valvetrain: 4 overhead camshafts 4 valves per Cylinder
- Engine Management: Zytek EMS 4.6.1
- Ignition: Zytek DCDI with coil over plug
- Spark plugs: NGK
- Fuel: 100 octane rating 70% + Ethanol E30 30%
- Max Torque: 330 lbf·ft (442 N·m)
- Max power: 520 bhp (388 kW)
- Max speed: 300 km/h
The front and rear suspension is of a double wishbone and pushrod operated twin coil over damper construction. Adjustable ride height, cambers and toe, as well as anti-dive and anti-squat made to optimise drive control.
A two-piece carbon clutch was tailored especially for the car to handle the exceptional torque of a racing engine with up to 550 bhp (410 kW) and the two racing starts per weekend. The unit combines lightweight construction with durability and bullet-proof reliability. The A1 car's gearchange is by an electronically controlled paddle-shifting via a six-speed paddle-shift semi-automatic sequential transmission peak loads at full throttle could literally shred a lesser clutch. The two-piece carbon clutch can take the load, even when the driver changes up with the PowerBoost activated. In hot and cold testing the clutch proved faultless. The clutch operation of the A1GP car was operated by the foot-pedal on the very left side.
The PowerBoost button on the A1 car allows the engine to reach its maximum of 550 bhp (410 kW). When used at the right time, this feature can encourage overtaking. For the PowerBoost to activate, the throttle position must be above 80% and the speed more than 60 km/h. The button must also be depressed to continue on PowerBoost mode. However, the PowerBoost automatically deactivates itself if the throttle falls below 40%. Each driver only has a limited number of uses of the PowerBoost function. The driver can only use it four times in a sprint race and eight times in a feature race. Once these maximum allocated uses of the PowerBoost have been used, the system is disabled until the end of the race, after which Zytek engineers reset the system for the next race.
A1 Grand Prix uses slick tyres on normal dry races. Pneumatics were supplied exclusively by Cooper Tires.
A1 Grand Prix uses 100 RON Biofuel for all cars.
"Powered by Ferrari" car (2008–09)Edit
The engine is built by Ferrari. It is a 4.5-litre Ferrari/Maserati V8 engine capable of delivering 600 bhp (450 kW) in PowerBoost mode. The new engine weighs 160 kg, 40 kg more than the previously-used Zytek engines.
- Configuration: 90 degree V8
- Displacement: 4500 cc
- Width: 666.5 mm
- Height: 446 mm
- Length: 569 mm
- Weight: 160 kg
- Cylinder block: Die-cast aluminium alloy
- Cylinder head: Sand-cast aluminium alloy
- Valvetrain: 4 overhead camshafts, 4 valves per cylinder
- Engine Management: Bosch MED 9.6
- Injection: Gasoline direct injection
- Spark plugs: NGK
- Fuel: Shell E10 102 RON
- Max Torque: 406 lb·ft (550 N·m)
- Max power: 600 bhp (448 kW)
- Max speed: 320 km/h
Each car is equipped with a unique PowerBoost system, a mechanism to provide short bursts of increased power to create additional overtaking opportunities and action throughout the race. By changing the engine's parameters, the system can give the driver additional power over a limited time during each race to take the car from the base 540 bhp (400 kW) to its maximum power of 600 bhp (450 kW).
The PowerBoost is driver-activated by a button mounted on the steering wheel. While the number of PowerBoost uses remain unchanged from Zytek era (4 times in Sprint races and 8 times in Feature races), a new rule for the season allowed drivers to use it for the entirety of a single lap during qualifying sessions.
Wheels and tyresEdit
Michelin was contracted to be the exclusive tyre supplier for three seasons beginning with 2008–09 season. Only one season was completed under this contract as the series was cancelled afterwards. Wheel rims were supplied by OZ Racing.
The designs stemmed from Formula One technologies that seek to offer both optimal performance and safety to the driver. Full rubber serration tests were performed on various tracks such as Fiorano, Imola, Jerez and Mugello resulting in an optimal compromise between grip, endurance and wear.
- Weight: Approx 700 kg including driver, race-ready (excluding fuel)
- Front and rear suspension: Double wishbone with pushrod operated coil-over damper units. Adjustable ride height, cambers and toe, adjustable anti-dive and anti-squat to optimize drive control
- Anti-roll bar: Multi-adjustable, quick-change front, and rear roll bars
- Chassis: Carbon fiber skins, aluminum honeycomb core. Tested to meet all applicable FIA crash safety standards
- Bodywork: Lightweight composite bodywork
- Gearbox: Six-speed longitudinal sequential. Gear selection via a Magneti Marelli semi-automatic paddle-shift system
- Driveline: Tripod jointed driveshafts
- Brakes: Brembo carbon discs, six-pot aluminum calipers
- Dampers: Penske VBP-45, two-way adjustable
- Wheels: Front 13” dia. X 12” Rear 13” dia. X 14”
- Steering: Titan angle drive bevel and two-pinion ratios
- Steering wheel: 280 mm diameter carbon, with mounted LCD dash
- Instrumentation and display: Magneti Marelli mounted display unit; Multi-channel logging facility for engineering analysis
- Seat belt: FIA approved Sabelt six-point safety harness
- Fuel cell: ATL fuel cell approximately 150-liter capacity and designed to take up to 50 percent ethanol
- Clutch: AP three-plate carbon/carbon with steel hub
- Tyres: Michelin control slick and treaded wet tires
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- "A1 GP engine spec" (PDF). Formula3.cc. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2011-07-06. Retrieved 2009-10-31.
- A1 GP Car regulations: Dimensions Archived August 23, 2006, at the Wayback Machine
- A1 Grand Prix Car regulations Archived August 23, 2006, at the Wayback Machine
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