After nine months the 2012 FIA Formula One World Championship will finally reach its scintillating conclusion at the Brazilian Grand Prix. Renault is to power one of the remaining championship contenders in Brazil but has no worries about engine reliability, knowing it's a higher altitude track.
Even more so, Renault and Red Bull earlier agreed to use the latest spec of alternator on both Bed Bull cars, after all other Renault powered teams chose to use it as of the US GP last week at Austin. Following Mark Webber's retirement however - as Red Bull were still using an older spec - the team has now chosen to make the switch in the hope for better reliability.
Rémi Taffin, Renault Sport F1 head of track operations:
"Interlagos requires every engine characteristic to be on form and we work very hard to give good driveability through the twisty back section. Sector 2, in particular Turns 8, 9 and 10, require a driveable engine to avoid wheel spin on the exits of the bends. This will be particularly important this weekend with the predicted wet conditions."
"The curved straight running from turn 12 past the pits and to the first corner also needs good acceleration, particularly as it sees the track go sharply uphill, with an elevation change just shy of 40m — just as you can really feel it when walking back from the grid, the engines will be straining on the edge of their power."
"However the main story about Interlagos is the overall altitude of the circuit. The Renault RS27 could produce around 8% less power than at a sea-level race so for these reasons we generally use engines with a higher mileage on their third race as power sensitivity is not so critical."
"There are however some benefits to being at such high altitude; fuel consumption is a lot lower than sea level races and the drag reduces since the air the cars are ‘carving’ through is thinner. This means that you will see cars running what looks like a high downforce setting, but the downforce generated will only be equivalent to a medium wing level."
"It’s not an easy one to finish the season on as there are a number of challenges we need to consider, but we feel ready for it and well prepared."