Ferrari are the oldest and most respected team in the entire history of Formula 1. You can’t think of the sport without thinking about those scarlet red cars that have had many legendary drivers behind the wheel. But you might be left wondering what engines Ferrari use in F1.
The Ferrari F1 team builds their own 1.6 liter V6 turbo hybrid engines. Ever since their first season in 1950, Ferrari have been building their own engines. Ferrari also supply 2 other teams with their engines (Alfa Romeo and Haas), and they have supplied more in the past.
They might have had some challenging seasons in the past, but they’ve also seen their fair share of dominance. Below, we go into more detail about the engines Ferrari use in Formula One, and discuss their performance over the years.
Does Ferrari Make Their Own F1 Engine?
Ferrari do currently build their own F1 engines. The Italian team builds their own 1.6 liter V6 turbo hybrid power units at their factory in Maranello. Ferrari have been building their own engines ever since they first entered the sport in 1950. Ferrari engines have almost always been among the best on the grid, but they’ve had their ups and downs.
Over the years, Ferrari have developed plenty of expertise on building engines, which has often helped them to get the edge over their competition in the engine department. We’ll likely never see a Ferrari F1 car without a Ferrari engine in the back of it. On top of that, they also supply engines to some other teams on the grid.
Ferrari are very selective on their customer teams as they are often considered the Ferrari junior teams. Ferrari academy drivers, such as Mick Schumacher, frequently land seats at Ferrari customer teams like Alfa Romeo and Haas.
Ferrari F1 Team Engines Over The Years
|1950s||10||4 x WDC|
|1960s||13||2 x WDC + 2 x WCC|
|1970s||37||3 x WDC + 4 x WCC|
|1980s||18||2 x WCC|
|1990s||28||1 x WCC|
|2000s||85||6 x WDC + 7 WCC|
A Long & Rich History
Ferrari is a team that has an incredibly long and rich history in Formula 1. The bright red cars have always had their place on the grid, and the Prancing Horse on the logo has become iconic over the years as they often led the pack. Ferrari is the most famous Formula 1 team, and chances are when someone thinks about Formula 1, they also think about Ferrari.
Because of how long the team has been in the sport, it’s impossible to fit their entire history into this article, which means that we can only cover the most important parts specifically related to the engines. But let’s start from their first victory.
Ferrari’s first ever victory came in 1951 at the British Grand Prix. The race was won by José Froilán González at Silverstone. The Argentine might not be a famous name in Formula 1 history, but his teammate at the time, Alberto Ascari, is still famous to this day. You might recognize the name Ascari, as it’s one of the chicanes at Monza, home to the Italian Grand Prix.
Monza is where Ascari took his first victory for Ferrari in 1951. Ascari won back to back races for Ferrari in 1951 at the Nurburgring and at Monza, to claim Ferrari’s second and third victories in Formula 1. Ascari would later also become Ferrari’s first ever champion, and a legend for the Italian team.
The 1951 season was won by Juan Manuel Fangio in the Alfa Romeo. The Constructors’ World Championship was not yet established, so, there was no team that won a WCC until 1958, when Vanwall won the title.
First Drivers’ Championship
It wasn’t long until Ferrari tasted their first Formula 1 World Championship. Just a year after their first victory, the Italian team had secured a Drivers’ World Championship for the first time through Alberto Ascari. The team didn’t have to wait long with their nation’s hero behind the wheel, who quickly became a legend in both Formula 1 and Ferrari.
Ascari dominated the 1952 season with six wins out of seven races. The Italian also set the fastest lap of the race five times, and scored a total of 53.5 points throughout the season. Out of the 426 laps that he raced, Ascari led an incredible 349 of them, meaning he spent 81% of the 1952 season leading a race!
Ascari went on to win another World Championship with Ferrari the following year. He might not have been as dominant as the season before, but the Italian still managed to secure his and Ferrari’s second ever World Drivers’ Championship. Both of these cars used the 2.5 liter inline-4 engine built by Ferrari.
First Constructors’ Championship
Ferrari’s first ever Constructors’ World Championship came in 1961. The team scored six pole positions, five victories, 14 podiums, and five fastest laps throughout the season. They had Phil Hill behind the wheel, who ultimately won the Drivers’ Championship in the same season, with Wolfgang von Trips alongside him.
The team performed so well with their 1.5 liter six cylinder engine that they managed to clinch the title in the fifth race of the season (a total of eight races were held in 1961). Ferrari’s V6 engine was used until 1964 when they won another World Constructors’ Championship.
Ferrari have won a total of 16 World Constructors’ Championships. Throughout most of their years though, their performance has been up and down. For example, they won two championships in the 1960s, four titles in the 1970s, then again back down to just two for the 1980s. In the 1990s they won just one World Championship.
The Ferrari team suffered a dry spell from 1984 until 1999 when they did not win a single championship. Between 1984 and 1996, the team won just 20 races, which averages to less than two race wins per season. However, in the 1997 season, things started looking up again for the Prancing horses.
An up and coming young German driver by the name of Michael Schumacher had joined the team in 1996, when the Ferrari team took a total of three race wins. But, in 1997, their race wins had nearly doubled to five as the Ferrari engine department started to get the hang of the V10 engines introduced the year before.
The V10 engine era would prove to become Ferrari’s best ever stint in the sport, and with Michael Schumacher at the wheel, the team would become even more iconic in Formula 1. Ferrari and Michael Schumacher were on the verge of making history in the pinnacle of motorsport.
With a mighty V10 engine in the back of the Ferrari, Michael Schumacher started to take over the sport. In 1999, Ferrari won the Constructors’ Championship once again, but the drivers’ title was sealed by Schumacher’s arch rival Mika Hakkinen at Ferrari’s rival team McLaren.
From 1999 onwards, Ferrari would go on to win the Constructors’ World Championship for six seasons in a row as they dominated the sport. Michael Schumacher contributed to the Drivers’ Championships at the same time, and during that time, the Italian team took a mighty 63 race wins out of 120 races, which is a win percentage of 52.5%.
One Of The Fastest F1 Cars
Ferrari also had one of the fastest Formula 1 cars in the history of the sport with the F2004, which clinched the constructors’ title in the 13th race out of 18, completely destroying the opposition at every race. This is the car that made Ferrari and Michael Schumacher world famous.
Fernando Alonso spoiled the party in 2005 and 2006 though, and while Ferrari won the constructors’ title in 2007 and 2008, Kimi Raikkonen’s 2007 victory was to be the Scuderia’s most recent Drivers’ Championship.
While Ferrari challenged for wins and even titles in the early 2010s, they had a mediocre power unit in 2020 and 2021 as they were hampered by the legality of their engine in 2019, as the FIA forced them to make changes to their fuel flow. Red Bull and Mercedes led the allegations against Ferrari, claiming that their engine was using more fuel than it was allowed to, giving the engine more power.
Following the disappointing engine performance they had in 2020, the Italian team focused on developing their power unit for the 2022 season. All of their hard work and sacrifice paid off as they showed up to the 2022 preseason testing with the best engine on the grid, just in time for the engine freeze.
This engine freeze means that teams and engine suppliers cannot develop the performance of their engines until at least 2026. This was done to help teams remain under the strict cost caps that are in place.
Ferrari and their customer teams Haas and Alfa Romeo put in the best performances that they have had since 2019 at the start of the 2022 season, with most of their advantage coming on the straights. Ferrari still arguably has the best power unit on the grid compared to Red Bull Powertrains, Renault, and Mercedes, even though the team struggled after TD39 was introduced at Spa in 2022.
Which Teams Use Ferrari Engines In F1?
The 3 F1 teams that currently use Ferrari engines are:
- Alfa Romeo
Alfa Romeo has been a customer team of Ferrari for more than a decade. Their first season with Ferrari engines in the back of their cars was in 2010 when the cars still ran the naturally aspirated V8 engines. The team was named Sauber F1 at the time and was stuck in the midfield. Even when Alfa Romeo came onboard in 2019, the Ferrari engine stayed in the back of the car.
Haas has also been a long time customer of the Ferrari engine. Haas have been a Ferrari customer team since their entry into the sport in 2016. The American team arguably suffered the most from the 2019 controversy as their car was consistently the slowest on the grid in 2020 and 2021 thanks to the drop in the Ferrari engine’s performance.
With the 2022 engine freeze locking the performance of the power units in place, Ferrari customer teams won’t be looking elsewhere anytime soon. Ferrari have the strongest power unit on the grid, which is a huge benefit to their customer teams who have also seen a boost in their performance on track.
Ferrari F1 Customer Team Engines Over The Years
|1966||J.A. Pearce Engineering||11th|
|1993||Lola BMS Scuderia Italia||7th|
|2007||Toro Rosso, Spyker||4th (Toro Rosso)|
|1st (Toro Rosso)|
|2010||BMW Sauber, Toro Ross||6th (BMW Sauber)|
|2011||Sauber, Toro Rosso||5th (Sauber)|
|2012||Sauber, Toro Rosso||2nd (Sauber)|
|2013||Sauber, Toro Rosso||4th (Sauber)|
|2014||Sauber, Marussia||9th (Marussia)|
|2015||Sauber, Marussia||5th (Sauber)|
|2016||Sauber, Haas, Toro Rosso||6th (Toro Rosso)|
|2017||Sauber, Haas||6th (Haas)|
|2018||Sauber, Alfa Romeo Sauber||4th (Haas)|
|2019||Haas, Alfa Romeo||4th (Alfa Romeo)|
|2020||Haas, Alfa Romeo||9th (Haas + Alfa Romeo)|
|2021||Haas, Alfa Romeo||8th (Alfa Romeo)|
|2022||Haas, Alfa Romeo||5th (Haas + Alfa Romeo)|
A Popular Choice
Ferrari has always been a popular engine supplier. Not only is the brand well-known for building fast cars for use on public roads, but they have also had a commanding presence on the track too. However, no customer team has ever seen any of the success of Ferrari’s works team.
KEY FACT: No Ferrari customer teams have ever won an F1 World Championship! In fact, only one customer team has even won a race with a Ferrari engine – Toro Rosso at Monza in 2008, at the hands of Sebastian Vettel.
The Ferrari F1 uses their own engines, and they always have. The team has won a total of 16 World Constructors’ Championships, and they have a total of 242 victories to their name. Toro Rosso are the only Ferrari customer team to have won a race, winning in Monza in 2008.