FIA urged to make cost cap exception after Cashgate Scandal

Alpine’s team principal Otmar Szafnauer has called on the FIA to make an exception in the cost cap.

The FIA has been urged to make an exception to current cost cap limitations to allow teams to create modern facilities that will allow them to compete on a level playing field with rivals.

Alpine team principal Otmar Szafnauer has explained that it’s difficult for teams to allocate the necessary money to bring about key upgrades given the budgetary restrictions.

Szafnauer is looking for a new simulator at the Enstone factory, as the current set up is 15 years old, limiting their development process.

The FIA has previously made exceptions, most recently allowing Aston Martin to work on bringing in a new wind tunnel at their Silverstone base.

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“Our current simulator is 15 to 20 years old. It’s an old McLaren model,” Szafnauer told Auto Motor Und Sport. 

“We ordered a new, modern simulator a month ago. But it’s going to be one and a half to two years to go until we get it. That’s just how long it takes for things to get built.

“We have to talk to the FIA ​​that necessary investments do not fall under the budget cap. Otherwise, you are trapped with your existing infrastructure.

“We have to build a new transmission test bench for 2026. There is no room for other measures. Certain projects should be outside the budget cap, such as the Aston Martin wind tunnel, for which an exception was made.

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“If it had been taken into account within the current regulations, it would never It would have been done.”

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The FIA introduced the budget cap in the 2021 season in an attempt to make the championship more competitive by limiting the domination of top teams.

While some teams had previously spend upwards of $400 million per season, the cost cap limits all teams to $135 million.

Expenditure that falls under the cost cap includes: car parts, elements needed to run the car, most personnel, garage equipment, transport costs and more.