All of the teams in Formula One have spent a significant portion of 2008 developing and testing the new Kinetic Energy Recovery Systems (KERS) that will debut in 2009. Among the teams there is a mix of two basic types of systems, a mechanical flywheel-based system and electrical battery-based systems. Ferrari is among the latter group and development of the systems has proved challenging in the environment of a formula one race car where space and mass are at a premium. Apparently, the development has also cost quite a bit more than originally anticipated, likely due to the extra testing needed. The team still hopes to have KERS ready for the 2009 season opener in Australia but they are also evaluating the new 2009 car without KERS, just in case.
Formula 1 technicians: The KERS is a great challenge, but it's more expensive than we thought
Maranello, 17th December 2008 - On the occasion of the pre-festive meeting in Maranello the Scuderia Ferrari technicians spoke about the KERS, the Kinetic Energy Recovery System, where electrical regenerative brakes will be used, and which is part of the 2009 regulations. "It's a great challenge," the technicians said, but as the cost "has exceeded our expectations." Technical Director Aldo Costa, Engine and Electronics Director Gilles Simon and Planner Nikolas Tombazis said: "As far as the engine and the electronics are concerned costs went down, but with the KERS we spent much more than we had planned."
"We're working a lot on the energy recovery system. We're a bit behind on our schedule, but our goal is to be ready with a working KERS for the first race, which will be held in Australia. Meanwhile we're also appraising the car without KERS."