The Sound Of Motorsport

Motorsport is almost synonymous with sound and unlike other people, the sounds of the engines may seem like music to motorsport fans. Since different engines are used in different series, their sounds vary. So today you will experience the sounds of different racecars from various motorsport series.

Formula One

V12 Engines

In the following footage from 1995, we see Grand Prix winner Jean Alesi in his V12 Ferrari driving around the old layout of Silverstone. The sound of the roaring V12 engines just seemed to suit the aggressive looking cars very well. No wonder this was called the golden era of Formula One.

Note: The video below will not work on this website. Please click on the option ‘Watch On YouTube’ to watch this video on YouTube.

V10 Engines (2000-2005)

The V10 era witnessed the loudest sounds ever produced by the cars in the history of Formula One. The racing was very entertaining and the sound was loved by the fans. Here is a clip from 2005 of Fernando Alonso on a hot lap at his home race in Spain.

V8 Engines (2006-2013)

This is definitely the most common engine sound a modern F1 fan must have heard. The cars became faster on corners and they were a little less noisy as compared to their predecessors. Here is some footage from 2011 of Jenson Button driving around the Shanghai International Circuit.

V6 Turbo Hybrid Engines (2014-Present)

The present era of Formula One is also called as the quiet era of Formula One as the V6 engines are the least noisiest of all F1 engines, much to the disappointment of Formula One fans. When the new generation of F1 cars raced for the first time at Melbourne in 2014, adjusting to the quietness was a little too hard for the fans. Watch Grand Prix winner Pastor Maldonado lap the legendary Monaco Circuit.

World Rally Championship- I4 Engines

I’ll be honest, I’m pretty new into rallying and hardly have any clue about the sounds that the rally cars from the past produced but after listening to the 2017 cars (the new generation), I can easily say that I’m a fan! The regulations require the cars to be fitted with an engine with 4 inline cylinders which makes it very loud. The sound just blends in with the amazing sight of rallying and this produces a stunning show. You can hear the pure sound of the roaring engines and the gear shifts! It must feel amazing to attend a rally!

LE MAns/ WEC : LMP1 – V4 Hybrid Engines

This is my personal favourite engine sound on the straights. The four cylinder hybrid engine gives you that racing feel on full throttle although it sounds very squeaky on the breaks as the car recovers the lost energy and stores it as extra hybrid power for later use. Watching a battle between LMP1 cars is amazing both in both the racing and the sound criteria. Luckily, great battles are a regular sight in the World Endurance Championship! Here is a video of the Porsche #17 from the 2015 24 Hours of Le Mans, which their teammates in the #19 car won. Enjoy the full throttle for 75% of the lap!

Formula E

For those who don’t know, Formula E is an all electric racing series which is contested on street circuits around the world. Although the racing is competitive and the sights are amazing, the sound just ruins it. The cars are very quiet and irritating to hear. Yes, I understand that since they are fully electric they will produce such a sound but I have to admit that I do not admire the sound that the cars produce. Anyways, here is Sebastian Buemi lapping the shortened Monaco Circuit in his E-Dams Renault.

It feels sad to see Monaco without most of it’s iconic parts like the Uphill Drive, Casino Square, Mirabeau, The Hairpin, Portier and the Tunnel. Doesn’t it?

Indycar – Chevrolet Indy v6

Most IndyCar races are held at oval racetracks like Indianapolis, Daytona and Fontana. The current generation Indycars use a chassis called the DW12 built by Italian manufacturer Dallara. The chassis was named in honour of two-time Indy500 winner Dan Wheldon who was tragically killed in a crash during a race at Las Vegas in 2011. All teams use the chassis and it features a purpose built 6 cyclinder engine made by Chevrolet. The cars are built specifically to generate higher topspeed and low downforce and they are set up to generate more downforce in the non-oval races. The machines look and sound stunning and at the oval circuits, the show seems even more breathtaking!

Which sound is your favourite? Comment below and let me know!

None of the media used in this article belong to me. Credits to whomsoever they may belong to.

About the author

Soumil Arora

14 year old motorsport fanatic, blogger and host. A foodie who loves to Play Football, Travel, Read and Race!
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