Hittade en riktigt intressant artikel på cars.uk.msn.com som beskriver vilka teknologier som tagits fram inom Formel 1 och som letat sig över till vanliga bilar. ECU och traction controll är två exempel enligt den här texten. Klipper in artikelns text nedanför men missa inte den otroligt fula Renault F1-bussen i artikeln;
Computerised engine management systems, often called the ECU, that varies the combustion process to optimise, power, torque and economy modes as selected by the driver when pressing the ‘sport’ or ‘economy’ buttons on certain models. Drivers of Alfa Romeo’s Brera, 159 and Spider models which have the Q-Tronic automatic gearbox system have the option of a sport and winter setting.
When the Sport/Winter button is pressed, the ECU sets a higher rpm gearchange – with longer sequences between gearshifts – for a more sporty and engaging drive. Holding the button down longer will engage the Winter function for maximum grip in snow or icy road conditions.
Active suspension systems
Active suspension on an F1 car is different to that fitted on road cars. The new Porsche Cayenne GTS has Porsche Active Suspension Management (PASM), which is an electronic damping control system that uses a series of sensors to monitor the movement of the body.
It also gathers data on lateral acceleration, steering angle, brake pressure and engine torque. The PASM control unit then evaluates this information and modifies the damping force on each individual wheel in accordance with the selected mode. The results are reduced body movement enabling greater car control and providing greater occupant comfort.
When it comes to braking, F1 cars are surprisingly similar to road-going cars, since like most road cars, F1 cars also use disc brakes. The rotating discs, which are attached to the wheels, are squeezed between two brake pads via the action of a hydraulic calliper. However there is a vast difference in the materials used.
F1 cars use carbon fibre brake discs which save weight and are able to operate at much higher temperatures than the steel discs used on road cars. In 2007 Ferrari announced that Brembo brakes featuring carbon ceramic material would be provided as standard on its entire range. Ferrari was also the first manufacturer to introduce carbon brakes, putting them on its Enzo five years ago.
Although banned in F1, Direct-Shift Gearboxes (DSG) owe their control systems to the sport – in the use of paddles. The VW Group makes good use of DSG on its cars. With the use of two clutches, fast shifts can be achieved and the torque converter of a regular automatic transmission is eliminated.
The latest evolution of Volkswagen’s DSG twin-clutch gearbox even features seven gears. The new system saves weight, improves efficiency and makes the new gearbox more compact.
In the Golf hatchback, compared with the six-speed manual version, the new seven-speed DSG brings a 10g/km CO2 saving and a fuel economy improvement of over 3mpg.
Although traction control systems in F1 cars are much more complex, in road cars, the system has traditionally been a safety feature in high-performance cars, which would otherwise need very sensitive throttle input to keep them from spinning when accelerating. Traction control systems are now widely fitted to non-performance cars and off-roaders. Should a wheel spin, it is slowed down with short applications of brakes, diverting more torque to the non-spinning wheel.
Infiniti’s FX models all have ESP with traction control as standard. While ESP adjusts brake pressure and engine torque automatically in understeer, oversteer or slippery road surface situations, helping the driver keep the intended path, Infiniti’s four-wheel drive system uses a torque split control strategy that automatically transfers optimum torque to the wheels according to road and driving conditions.
The system also provides high starting traction performance and a smooth, stable acceleration, especially in snow-covered or off-road situations.
Brake energy regeneration
Featuring in this year’s racing car designs, the brake energy regeneration system converts the kinetic energy of a moving car into another form of energy with either a consequential saving in fuel consumption or more available power. The BMW X6 features Brake Energy Regeneration and incorporates an intelligent alternator control and an absorbent glass mat battery to recycle previously lost energy and improve fuel consumption.
This is achieved as the alternator reduces drag on the engine by only engaging when required to charge the battery. Normally a traditional alternator is constantly draining power from the engine.
Additionally, the energy generated by the engine on over-run (under braking or descending a hill) was also previously wasted. Now this lost energy is used by the alternator to charge the battery.
Direct petrol fuel injection
Originally used on F1 engines, direct petrol fuel injection is now widely used by car manufacturers to make the combustion process much more efficient, reduce carbon emissions and improve fuel economy. Today, Audi and Volkswagen are probably the most prolific users of direct-injection petrol engines; they call it FSI which stands for Fuel Stratified Injection.
The TFSI engine on the Audi A3 provides high performance with exceptional fuel economy. The system Audi uses switches between modes to offer maximum fuel efficiency or overtaking power.
Manufacturers try to reduce aerodynamic drag on road cars to improve their fuel consumption and optimise their top speed. Spoilers are used to stabilise road-going supercars while rear diffusers, which are used on F1 cars, may also be fitted to suck the car onto the road.
Aerodynamic aids on Lotus’ Exige S act to impart 80 kilos of downforce at 100mph, squeezing the semi-slick tyres onto the tarmac for extreme cornering grip. Very F1 indeed.
F1-inspired road cars
There are very few cars designed for road use that replicate F1 design and technology. Of the distinguished few, some were designed as concept cars for specialist use while others have appeared in showrooms. Of these the Mclaren F1, Enzo Ferrari and F50 are instantly recognisable. However F1 has inspired some manufacturers to build high-performance yet affordable models, like the Twingo Renaultsport 133 which was unveiled earlier this year by the drivers of the ING Renault F1 Team.
The latest model in the Renault Sport Technologies range, rounds off the Renaultsport family alongside Clio and Mégane Renaultsport.
The car is powered by a 1.6-litre 16V engine that delivers 133bhp and 160Nm of torque at 4,400rpm. Further details will be available nearer to its UK launch in October.
1995 Renault Espace F1
Surprisingly, the car that takes the top spot for being most like an F1 car in terms of mechanics is a Renault Espace. Born from a joint venture between Renault and Matra, the Renault Espace F1 was created to celebrate the 10 year anniversary of the Espace and Renault’s involvement in Formula One racing.
Matra used 1994 world champion Williams Renault’s power train unit and fitted the engine centrally in the Espace without changing the model.
To do so, they took an Espace off the assembly-line, cut out its floor pan to replace it with a carbon body structure harbouring the 820 hp V10, sequential box and automatic attitude control. With a special front end, ad hoc brakes and aerodynamic appendices to prevent it from flying away, it could get up to 300 kph!