Toyota Motorsport president John Howett has questioned the FIA’s move towards a greener future for Formula 1.
In addition to introducing KERS next season FIA president Max Mosley has called for 50 per cent reduction in fuel consumption by 2015. Toyota has been a lot less enthusiastic about KERS than other manufacturers, and Howett would prefer to see the sport used as a promotional tool – ironically a path that Honda has already followed – rather than a technological proving ground.
“What we have to understand is, are we using F1 as a platform to promote ecological or, shall we say, socially accepted practices?,” said Howett. “If we are, then it’s different from setting one’s self up to define new technologies which will change the world. Frankly, when you look at what is being spent by car manufacturers and research institutes on things like KERS, F1 budgets are minuscule.
“I don’t think F1 pollutes, because the fuel we consume and the amount of nitrous oxide and carbon dioxide we place in the atmosphere is relatively low. One could argue that if a few hundred million people stay at home to watch a race, that contributes more to emissions.”