Indy Cars reach higher speeds on ovals than they do on road courses naturally. Formula One cars only race road courses and then, not on any courses that American open-wheelers race on (except for 1/2 of the Indianapolis Motor Speedway going the opposite direction.) Consequently its hard to compare. Both reach speeds in excess of 200 mph and Formula One has the most horsepower coupled with the lightest cars. You would think that would tell the story, however, F1 also have more downforce to help them handle their slow corners. This results in slowing down the car's top speed.
Indy Cars will qualify for this year's Indy 500 with average speeds over 220 mph. Arie Luyendyk qualified in 1996 with an average speed of 236 mph.
Peter Gethin qualified with the fastest time in F1 history at the Italian GP in 1971 with an average speed of 150.754. F1 cars, at the end of a straight, reach a maximum speed of around 212.5 mph (340 kph).
The IRL claim their cars can go from 0-100 mph in under 3 seconds. CART claims 4.2 seconds. The IRL is using new 3.5 Liter normally-aspirated V8 engines this year with horsepower in the 650-750 range. F1 used to use 1.5 liter turbos back in the 80's. Although these cars had over 1000 hp, today's F1 cars go faster with ~830 hp due to advances in the technology of other parts of the race car. CART, while down to 1 engine manufacturer, is at least sticking with their 2.65L Turbo engines which have dropped off in power to about 800 HP.
The tracks as well as the car's engine, suspension, aerodynamics, tires, etc. determine how fast they go. But you must realize that the sanctioning bodies of these race series are often changing the rules, trying to slow the cars down in an attempt to maintain safey and reach a good level of competition.
|Number of Cylinders||10 in V/80 degrees||8 in V/90 degrees||8 in v/90 degrees|
|Number of Valves||40||32||32|
|Displacement||2,997 cc||3,500 cc||2,646.9 cc (161.5 ci.)|
|Max. Power||830 H.P.||720 H.P.||800|
|Fuel System||Magneti Marelli digital efi||Sequential EFI||Mercedes-Benz/Ilmor Injection|
|Fuel Capacity||?||35 gallon||35 gallon|
|Fuel Type||Unleaded Petrol||Methanol||Methanol|
|Engine Price||A season costs $5-35 million.||$1.5-2 million. Of course you have to rebuild them practically after every race, you need several, etc.-||$150,000 leases you one|
|Ford 3.0L V10||Chevrolet 3.5L V8||Ford 2.6L V8 Turbo|
|Toyota 3.0L V10||Toyota 3.5L V8|
|Honda 3.0L V10||Honda 3.5L V8|
|Mercedes 3.0L V10|
|BMW 3.0L V10|
|Ferrari 3.0 V10|
|Saubers 3.0L V10
Really last years
|Renault 3.0L V10|
While F1 engines are not reused from race to race, Indy Car engines are often rebuilt and used
in more than one race.
Currently, all F1 engines are V10's and they sound similar. A few years ago you had a variety of engines, such as the Ford V8's and the Ferrari V12's. This made for an interesting racing sound.
The Indy Racing League's system of engine building is much like the one used in NASCAR: The manufacturer supplies the parts and an approved builder puts them together.
In the IRL, there are approx 5 Chevy engine builders: Roush, TWR, Speedway, Menard and VDS. Honda and Toyota have at least one each also.
These engine builders vary in size. Speedway Engines has 11 employees in a small shop south of the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Roush Technologies of Livonia, Mich., employs 1,500 people and uses more than 30 dynometers to test both race and passenger car engines. IRL engine builders' fees vary, but on average, rebuilds cost $17,000. Most builders do more than 100 rebuilds in a season.
The IRL's engine program was born out of league founder Tony George's disdain for CART's lease arrangement, which puts teams (and arguably the series) at the mercy of the engine manufacturers. CART has since become a spec series - with everyone running the same Ford motor and chassis.
Some builders sacrifice horsepower in the name of reliability. A few of the better-financed teams, such as Menard, Kelley and Foyt, have both a qualifying and a race motor. In the latter, sturdier parts are used.
|Brakes||Ventilated carbon discs||Ventilated carbon discs||disc|
|Gearbox||Ferrari longitudinal gearbox, semiautomatic sequential electronically controlled, 7speeds+reverse||XTRAC gearbox standard w/6 forward gears||Manual with 6 forward gears|
|Front & Rear Suspension||Independent, push-rod activated torsion spring||Push-rod with double wishbones and Riley Rocker Parrell Spring/Damper||Pushrod|
|Weight||with water, lubricant and driver: 600 kg (1323 lbs)||735 kg (1,620 lbs) DRY (minimum)||703 kg (1,550 lbs) DRY (minimum)|
|Chassis||Carbon fiber and honeycomb composite structure||Carbon/aluminum honeycomb construction with machined aluminum bulkheads||Carbon Fiber|
|Wheel Diameter||13 inches||15 inches||15 inches|
|Chassis Price||A season costs $6-33 million||$299,000 for one||$430,000 for one|
|Wheel Base||2,953 mm (116 inches)||(110 inches)||(123 inches)|
|Front Track||1,490 mm (59 inches)||1,702 mm (67 inches)||1,727 mm (68 inches)|
|Rear Track||1,405 mm (55 inches)||1,613 mm (63.5 inches)||1,727 mm (68 inches)|
|Length||4,340 mm (171 inches)||4,889 mm (192.5 inches)||4,826 mm (190 inches)|
|Width||(70.87 inches)||(78.5 inches)||(78.5 inches)|
|Height||961 mm (37.8 inches)||(38 inches)||940 mm (37 inches)|
Other Reynard 98I/Mercedes-Benz IC-108E data:
Steering Type: Reynard rack and pinion
Turns: 1 (lock to lock)
Weight Dist: 41/59 (front/rear)
Turbocharger: Allied Signal/Garrett
Clutch: 4-plate diaphragm spring
Shock Absorbers: Ohlins
Wheels: BBS/Forged Magnesium
Spark Plugs: Bosch
1999 Peugeot A18 Engine
Number of cylinders: 10 at 72°
Cubic capacity: 2998 cc
Timing: by gear group
Valves: 4 per cylinders, with pneumatic return
Cylinder block and cylinder beads: light alloy
Camshafts: 2 per row of cylinders
Fuel feed and ignition: TAG Electronic control
Dimensions (mm): 620 x 512 x 393
Weight: less than 120 kg
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