FormulaNerds Cut To The Race Podcast

F2 and F3 boss reveals how new sustainable fuel will impact 2023 season

From next year, the fuel will be 55% sustainable, with this figure set to rise to 100% by 2027

Latest Episode | Cut To The Race Podcast

Formula 2 and Formula 3 are set to run with sustainable fuel from next season, the series’ organiser Formula Motorsport Limited (FML) has announced. 

Developed by Saudi oil & gas firm and Formula 1 partner Aramco, the new blend is said to be sourced from 55% sustainable materials. This percentage is set to rise year-by-year to 100% by 2027, in keeping with the FIA’s strategy to become net carbon zero by 2030. 

As part of sweeping changes expected to be introduced in 2026, F1 is planning to make its engines less complicated and 100% sustainably-fuelled. 

With this in mind, the new fuel mixture’s introduction in F2 and F3 is being seen as a trial run, ahead of its utilisation in motorsport’s top-tier competition in four years’ time. 

“Sustainability is at the top of the global motorsport agenda, and it is vital to see this work not only going on in Formula 1, but also in Formula 2, Formula 3 and throughout the entire ecosystem,” FIA President Mohammed Ben Sulayem said in a statement.

“Our sport is developing and evolving rapidly and it will continue to lead the way, pioneering the technologies, including sustainable fuels, that will be crucial to tackle climate change,” he added. 

Dignitaries shaking hands having signed the new F1/F2/F2/Aramco deal. (Photo Credit: F2).
Dignitaries shaking hands having signed the new F1/F2/F2/Aramco deal. (Photo Credit: F2).
How sustainable will the fuel be?

In the worlds of advanced tech and automotive, the word ‘sustainability’ is thrown around a lot these days, but what exactly does it mean with regards to Aramco’s new fuel?

Well, in this case, FML says it means the fuel will have to be made from a “second generation bio component” or “non-bio carbon capture or synthetic process.”

In layman’s terms, the new rules will require the fuel to be composed of either a non-food biologically grown material, or materials generated from capturing and storing CO2. 

Speaking at a technical briefing, F2 and F3 Technical Director Didier Perrin explained that the first fuel introduced will include bio-sourced ingredients, with the plan being to integrate more synthetically-made components into it from 2025. 

“We intend to keep the same fuel formulation [as 2023] for 2024,” said Perrin. “Our next step will be for 2025 and 2026 to start including synthetic components, and then to pave the way for Formula 1 in 2026 and come up with a fully-sustainable fuel in 2027 for F2 and F3.”

“We have a big ambition with Aramco and F2 and F3,” added Pierre Olivier Calendini, Director of Aramco Fuel and Research. “We don’t just want to be sustainable with synthetic fuel, we want to be sustainable with synthetic fuel and carbon dioxide capture in 2027.”

The Aston Martin F1 team also has a partnership with Aramco. (Photo Credit: Aston Martin F1 Twitter).
The Aston Martin F1 team also has a partnership with Aramco. (Photo Credit: Aston Martin F1 Twitter).
What do the changes mean for F2/F3?

So, will this year’s F2 cars need to be changed to function with the new fuel?

According to Perrin, F2 and F3 “don’t intend to make any changes to the cars next year.” The feeder formula boss explained that the 2023 engines are currently running with the fuel on dynos without needing any hardware changes, and have only required some remapping to function. 

That said, Perrin explained that “maybe from 2025, for sure from 2027,” the engines will have to be adjusted, with parts such as injectors most likely to need changing. 

Performance-wise, Perrin added that the FIA has worked with Aramco to overcome some of the issues seen racing with sustainable fuels in other racing series. As such, he said that he’s “very confident” of the fuel’s reliability and that it’ll provide “the exact same level of performance” as the sport’s current mixture.

More broadly, much of the focus around FML’s fuel announcement has understandably been on the impact its testing could have on F1, but Calendini emphasised that it could have even wider implications for sustainable transport. 

“We believe that sustainable fuel will play a role in reducing the total emissions for transport, whether that be road transport, air or marine,” concluded Calendini.

“We are developing technology to support this necessary change and this partnership with F2 and F3 is a fantastic platform on which to test our fuel formulations and also support F1.”

Featured Image Credit: Formula 2 Twitter.

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Zeen is a next generation WordPress theme. It’s powerful, beautifully designed and comes with everything you need to engage your visitors and increase conversions.

Back to the top