Motori Moderni

Motori Moderni was an Italian manufacturer of racing engines, the engines delivered in the 1980s to various Formula 1 teams.

  • 2.2.1 The concept
  • 2.2.2 The Race
  • 2.2.3 See also


The company was founded in the fall of 1984 and had its headquarters in Biandrate ( Novara ). Founder was the Italian engineer Carlo Chiti and the businessman Piero Mancini, a Florentine Fiat dealer. The company was eventually initiated by Giancarlo Minardi.

Carlo Chiti was for decades a fixture in Italian racing. After a lengthy engagement at Ferrari Chiti lifted in 1962 along with Giotto Bizzarrini and several partners the Italian automaker ATS from the baptism that created a legendary road-going sports car and a less successful race car for the Formula 1. Just one year later disintegrated ATS. Some employees moved to the Venetian project Scuderia Serenissima; Carlo Chiti but founded the company Autodelta, which should be closely linked in the next 20 years with Alfa Romeo. From 1979 operating Autodelta 's Formula 1 program of Alfa Romeo; Since 1983, however, gave Autodelta only the designs for chassis and engine, while the race in 1983 to 1985 by Gianpaolo Pavanellos company Euro Racing was organized, which was a few years later also involved in the Formula 1 team EuroBrun Racing. After Alfa Romeo Corse 1984 had gone through a difficult period, Alfa Romeo changed the organizational structure by Autodelta, whereupon Chiti had to give up part of his influence on the former Lancia engineer Gianni Tonti. Chiti was not happy, and he expressed his dissatisfaction repeated in several press interviews.

In the spring of 1984 Giancarlo Minardi made ​​contact with Carlo Chiti. The established team Minardi had long been active with their own cars in the Formula 2 and worked from the early 1980s to be seen in the rise in the Formula 1 Giancarlo Minardi was looking for a partner who can provide his team an affordable turbo engine could. First Minardi trying to get the turbo engines from Alfa Romeo, Carlo Chiti which had designed and which have operated since 1982 in Alfa Romeo's factory team as well as from the summer of 1984 the customer team Osella. Minardi first Formula 1 car, which finished in July 1984 M85 was seen designed for the Alfa engine, and according to some press reports, in late summer of 1984 in fact a test drive of the M85 with an Alfa Romeo turbo engine occurred. Ultimately, Alfa Romeo decided were opposed to the supply Minardi; the extent to which this is due to an intervention Enzo Osellas is hardly verified.

After Giancarlo Minardi effort to Alfa Romeo had failed, succeeded Minardi, Carlo Chiti enthusiasm for his cause. Chiti separated from Autodelta and Alfa Romeo and founded with Minardi and with substantial financial support from Piero Mancini in the fall of 1984 a new company called Motori Moderni. The aim was for the young Minardi team to develop its own turbo engine and build, which should be operational as early as the Formula 1 1985 season.

In the second year of its existence Motori Moderni had 15 employees. Carlo Chiti declared the beginning of 1986, his company was to produce medium similar to Cosworth engines for very different racing classes. He named alongside Formula 1 explicitly includes the Formula 3000, and also the American IMSA series and offshore boat race. Finally, he also brought the construction of their own Formula 1 chassis into play. For all of these plans, however, was nothing.

The products

Between 1985 and 1990 Motori Moderni developed two different engines were used in at various Formula 1 teams. Both engines drove a no championship points.

The Motori Moderni F.1

The concept

First product was a Motori Moderni F.1 -called turbo engine. The engine had been developed in a very short time. In October 1984 Chiti began with the first drawings, and for the third race of the Formula 1 1985 season, the Grand Prix of San Marino, the motor worked the first time at the rear of the Minardi M85. The first two races of the year, the team had yet ( as Tyrrell ) must contest with a Cosworth - aspirated engine.

In technical terms negotiated at the Motori Moderni F.1 by a six-cylinder engine in V configuration with a cylinder angle of 90 degrees. Initially used Chiti a mechanical injection of ball Fischer, later they took over the used Ferrari electronic injection Magneti Marelli (but on the level of development of 1984). The charging was carried out by two turbochargers of KKK. As power Motori Moderni gave a value of about 720 hp. To the extent this was true, it was thus about 150 hp at the level of the EF15 engines from Renault and was located approximately on a level with the Zakspeed engines.

The racing applications

  • Minardi - Motori Moderni used the engine from 1985 to 1987 consistently ( with the exception of the first two races in 1985 ). During this time the engine was 72 times used by Minardi. The best race result were two eighth places at the Australian Grand Prix in 1985 by Pierluigi Martini and the Grand Prix of Mexico in 1986 by Andrea de Cesaris. After completion of the Formula 1 season 1987 Minardi of Motori Moderni separated. Better performance The young Italian team promised by the use of the now re- approved naturally aspirated engines. Minardi Cosworth was chosen.
  • During the three years of operation of the Motori Moderni F.1 turbo engine was used by a customer team. In the early autumn of 1986 debuted the southern French team AGS, Minardi former competitor from Formula 2 days, with a car in Formula 1 It was the last season in which only turbo engines were admitted. Mediated by the Italian Jolly Club sponsor, AGS sat for his first two Formula 1 race, the Italian Grand Prix and the Grand Prix of Portugal, for his JH21C each one (used ) Motori Moderni - aggregate one. AGS - driver Ivan Capelli could qualify for both races, but different from each with a technical defect in the car.
  • In addition, Osella tried for the 1986 season to Motori Moderni - engines. The team prepared the Osella FA1H for this engine; the connection, however, did not materialize eventually. You failed to capacity deficiencies in Motori Moderni, beside possibly also to an objection Giancarlo Minardi, who still remembered that Enzo Osella had objected to a transfer of Alfa Romeo engines to Minardi two years earlier.
  • Finally Motori Moderni has been associated with the still mysterious Swiss Formula 1 Racing Project Ekström. The Swede Cecilia Ekström, who temporarily held in 1985 Formula 3000 team, spread over the course of the year repeated to build in Flims own Formula 1 car to be equipped with a Motori Moderni - engine. With this assertion, they even made it to the Swiss television. However, what they presented as a separate car, was only the unpainted hull of the 1983 ATS D3, and at the Motori Moderni - block that could be seen in the background, it was merely a wooden model. In the late summer of 1986 Carlo Chiti claimed to have sent to Ms. Ekstrom such a model; a further supply of jet engines was but did not come in the absence of payments from Switzerland about.

The Subaru M3512

In the 1990 Formula 1 season a further developed by Motori Moderni engine in Formula 1 This appeared traded it for a twelve- cylinder engine with a 120 degrees cylinder angle. The engine was named the Subaru M3512. It was a commissioned work for the Japanese automaker Subaru, who wanted to join as a third major Japanese producer in Formula 1 in the wake of Honda and Yamaha.

The concept

Subaru wanted to push this way its notoriety and the sales of his cars through sporting successes. To this end, the company planned a broad base to the addition to the activities in rallying and should include a stake in Formula 1. Initially, the use of a separate team had been planned with own design car and engine, and up to the fall of 1987, Japanese engineers had brought a V12 engine to the prototype stage. Then, however, this project was discontinued; possibly due to lack of performance of the prototype may also be in view of the cost of the project. Instead, the company management decided soon for an easier way: you wanted to create an engine commissioned work for an established company and make it an existing Formula 1 team as an engine supplier available. The choice fell in the winter of 1987 /88, the company Motori Moderni by Carlo Chiti. Chiti had already developed concepts for its own V12 naturally aspirated engine for the post- turbo era, but found it in Formula 1 no takers.

In October 1987, the partnership between Motori Moderni and Subaru was decided. Subaru aimed for this purpose a separate branch in Italy, the company Subaru Technica Europe in Milan, the head of the Japanese racing driver Yoshiro Takaoka was. Motori Moderni developed during the year 1988 according to the specifications of Subaru a twelve-cylinder engine, which was in accordance with the company concept, designed as a boxer engine. Also Chiti was inclined towards the boxer concept; in an interview, he described his Alfa Romeo boxer engine type 1260, which was later used in 1976 at Brabham and Alfa Romeo factory team, as his favorite engine.

The new boxer engine was completed in the fall of 1988. He was called Subaru -MM 1235. The engine had, as planned, a low center of gravity, however, was extremely broad: the pure block measured without exhaust 72 cm in width and 81 cm in height. It was overweight and gave very little power. Chiti claimed that the engine strip 600 hp, which was roughly 50 to 80 horsepower under the level of a Cosworth DFR; driver but later agreed that it may indeed have been at most 500 hp.

In the course of 1989 attempted Chiti and Subaru to see a Formula 1 team, which would put the engine in the coming season. The most advanced contacts with Minardi. In the summer of 1989, a Minardi M188 was equipped with the Subaru engine and a coordinated Minardi gearbox. Gianni Morbidelli, Pierluigi Martini and Paolo Barilla undertook so, according to an article in the magazine Auto Italia in spring and early summer, several tests at Misano. Martini succeeded in a series of tests to complete 55 laps in a row; on another day, however, the engine collapsed after only 11 laps.

In December 1989, finally gave the opportunity for a race for the Subaru engine. Subaru took over the majority stake in the faltering Italian Coloni team. From the first race of the Formula 1 season 1990, the engine should be used in a Coloni car.

The races

Coloni was in early 1990, a financially and organizationally troubled team. There was little substance and especially little development work. There was a new car; therefore, only one of the existing Coloni C3 chassis was rebuilt on the operation of the boxer engine; the car was now called Coloni C3B. Overall, the vehicle was significantly overweight and hard to handle. Colonis only driver, Bertrand Gachot, missed eight times in eight attempts, the qualification. Apart from the hopeless team Coloni Racing Life at this time was the weakest team of the season. Gachot had this, his own view. In a newspaper interview, he explained a few years later: " The engine was not so bad. But the rest ... ".

Already given the test results from the summer of 1989, Subaru had become clear that the boxer engine from Motori Moderni had no future. Therefore, Chiti was still in 1989 tasked with developing a new engine in a classic V-12 alignment. This engine in 1990 was not yet ready at the start of the Formula 1 season. If Subaru nevertheless it decided to start the season with the non- competitive boxer engine, this was because, not with a foreign engine has its own team - to want to equip - especially by Cosworth. The expectation was that Coloni would develop at this time a new car that should be driven by the future V12 engine. In fact, there were no discernible development work at Coloni. In the summer of 1990 Subaru realized the futility of the project and withdrew immediately from the formula returns 1.