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Verstappen points out huge flaw in F1's 2026 regulation changes

Verstappen points out huge flaw in F1's 2026 regulation changes

Verstappen points out huge flaw in F1's 2026 regulation changes

Verstappen points out huge flaw in F1's 2026 regulation changes

Formula 1 is moving towards greener technology in 2026, but the planned new hybrid engines will bring with them a host of problems according to three-time world champion Max Verstappen.

Verstappen and Red Bull have forged a symbiotic relationship between driver and car, and there has been no catching the Dutchman in recent seasons.

He has won the last three world drivers' titles, and is 13 points clear of Red Bull teammate Sergio Perez atop this year's standings following their 1-2 at the Japanese Grand Prix last Sunday.

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But those successes have been achieved with the existing V6 engines, which in 2026 will have to evolve to incorporate 50 per cent internal combustion and 50 per cent electrical power.

One consequence will be heavier cars, which manufacturers are trying to counteract with active aero elements, such as making the front wing adjustable. Verstappen is wary of the change.

Verstappen won the recent Japanese GP
The Dutchman has doubts ahead of 2026

What did Verstappen say?

"With the potential like active aero and stuff, I'm not sure if we should head into that direction - but that's what it's looking like at the moment," he told Autosport. "Hopefully, we can optimise all these kinds of things.

"For me, it's more important to just try and fight the weight of the cars, try and optimise that instead of all these tools and tricks to try and help the overtaking or following. There must be different ways to be able to do it."

Simulator runs have shown that there is currently a high risk of cars spinning when the rear wing was in low-drag mode. Verstappen is resigned to the manufacturers reacting to the new regulations.

"With the engine regulation that they went into, they kind of need to do that to create the top speed where the battery stops deploying and stuff," he said.

"Some tracks will work a bit better, and some tracks probably it's a bit more on the edge. Of course, people will try to counter my arguments, but I guess we'll find out anyway in '26."

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