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Page last updated at 12:04 GMT, Wednesday, 8 October 2008 13:04 UK

F1 tyres to promote 'green' push

Bridgestone president Shoshi Arakawa poses with a Ferrari fitted with the green-grooved tyres that will be used at the Japanese Grand Prix
The green grooves will stand out on the cars in Fuji this weekend

Formula One cars will have the grooves in their tyres painted green in this weekend's Japanese Grand Prix to promote an environmental campaign.

Governing body the FIA is attempting to reduce the impact of motoring on the environment through a promotion called "Make Cars Green".

The campaign is backed by leading F1 teams such as McLaren and Ferrari.

"The campaigns help to show us we can all drive in a greener way," said championship leader Lewis Hamilton.

"The sport can also help in other ways, especially with the launch of new energy-efficient technologies next season."

F1 cars will use kinetic energy recovery systems (Kers) for the first time in 2009, where energy that would otherwise be wasted as heat loss during braking is captured and used during acceleration.

Similar systems, which increase the fuel efficiency of cars, are in use on road cars produced by Toyota, Honda and BMW, among others.

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FIA president Max Mosley said: "New rule changes, alongside the support for awareness-raising initiatives such as the Make Cars Green campaign, will change the face of motorsport and place it at the very heart of environmental developments in the automotive sector."

F1 tyres, produced by Japanese company Bridgestone, have four circumferential grooves - and each will be painted green for this weekend's race at Fuji Speedway.

The softer of the two types of tyre - both of which have to be used during the race - will still have the single white stripe on the innermost groove.

The announcement of the decision to use the tyres was accompanied by a statement from bosses of the Honda, Williams and BMW teams of support for a new environmentally sensitive approach to F1.

BMW motorsport director Mario Theissen said: "Devices such as Kers are important in motorsport.

F1 can take the lead in the adaptation of a more efficient power-train

Mario Theissen
BMW motorsport director
"BMW is in Formula One not just for marketing reasons but also because the F1 programme can create technology synergies and innovations which can be carried over to road car development.

"If you look at what is required by future road cars, fuel economy/CO2 reduction is the top objective right now and for the foreseeable future.

"So it is clear that if we can do something in this area in F1 we will really benefit from it.

"We see a big chance in Kers because in F1 we have an unrivalled development speed.

"We are pushing the envelope on a weekly basis and we can explore unknown territory in a much quicker and more efficient way than a complex road car project.

"We are very sure that Kers will contribute in a big way to future powertrain concepts for road cars.

"In the future my expectation is that the powertrain will change from what we have today with the combustion engine and the gearbox to a complex unit incorporating a smaller combustion engine, an electric motor generator, an electric storage unit, control electronics and probably a very different type of transmission.

"The true innovation will lie in the adaptation of these individual components and the integration into a more efficient powertrain. I think F1 can take the lead in that."

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see also
F1 chiefs agree to form new body
30 Jul 08 |  Formula One
'Green' engines given F1 go-ahead
07 Aug 06 |  Formula One
Mosley urges F1 cost & fuel cuts
04 Jul 08 |  Formula One


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