Why F1 Pistons Cost £50,000!


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    This single piston costs £50,000. And for good reason. It has to withstand over 200G when moving up and down in the engine at over 80mph.
    F1 engines cost over £7 Million each and these pistons are one of the key components that help them produce over 1000hp.
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    But why does it cost 1000 times more than the piston out of your road car? It turns out there are many very good reasons for insane costs.
    If you’re into F1, then you’ll know that you can’t start an F1 engine like you can with a normal road car.
    The incredible tolerances mean that the pistons are seized in the cylinders until the car is warmed up, so the engineers have to take at least 30 minutes to warm the coolant and oil before they can start the engine.
    So how come you don't need to do this in your road car?

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    Pubblicato il 2 mesi fa


    1. Driver61

      Did you know so much goes into these Pistons? Thanks to Fuel for Fans for supporting the channel! Check out the link in the description!

      1. WILLIAM LEE

        @james yeah if you're building engines out of a shed that'll last 1 lap and make half the horsepower. If you've been to Brixworth you'll understand why things costs so much.

      2. james

        It could be accomplished alot cheaper.

      3. WILLIAM LEE

        The geometry on the crown of these pistons are incredibly complex compared to the simple geometry for road and aftermarket ones. No other turbo petrol engine cars run 18:1 compression ratio so I can understand why they costs so much

      4. liberty jesus

        @Prince Edmund, Duke of Edinburgh poopy butt go vroom vroom

    2. Charlie Angkor

      I believe thick and thin material has the same coefficient of expansion.

    3. Simon Schmidt

      Bring back V10's

    4. John Philip Tan

      0.1mm is pretty big tolerance

    5. Lars F1

      C’mon... “these engines cost around £7 Million each” *puts £7 Million ($9.4 Million)*... R.I.P. people who use euro’s (me)

    6. Anabel Wentworth

      The sleepy kite cephalometrically travel because transport pathologically milk by a nice white. charming, oafish sofa

    7. Guacamole Hole

      Money has no meaning in sports

    8. Ivor Uren

      60 thou gap? We used to run 3 thou maximum on TZ350 Yamahas and those pistons were only £60 each, me thinks F1 boys are being ripped off big time. :-/

    9. Baldur Vizla


    10. A. B.

      £50000 per cylinder in the title and you put 2 sponsor adds just in the first 4 minutes? It's a bit of a clickbate, isn't it?

    11. SAMFICOM

      that would be enough to feed thousands african children dying from hunger.

    12. Rodrigo Tassara

      Man held £50000 and his hand didn't tremble

    13. markspc1

      Ah who cares !

    14. Rollo Martins

      What is a piston? Something similar to a whip? Something you used in the 19hundreds to move carriages? #driveelectric

    15. Norman Mitchell

      You say that the pistons are an interference fit in the cylinders at room temperature. How is the engine assembled with such tolerances?

    16. Henika Chandra

      Made from 1000 layer damascus steel. 🤣🤣

    17. Dr Broncanuus

      a Bugatti Chiron, makes more 500 bhp than a F1 car and costs 1/3 rd the price of a F1 engine........piston technology is not the secret to constructing a winning F1 car....Ferrari, showed this by cheating with a higher octane fuel.....

    18. nnanaming N

      subtitles please..

    19. Kristian Gameplay

      what???? are they made out of one big diamond stone block, unbelievable, but in my personal opinion it's way too much money for one piston, sorry if I offend who made these pistons, but it's too much money for one peace

    20. Mr Titanium

      I call BS on these pistons costing as much as you claim. Check your sources as they’re making you looking stupid.

    21. TransMedia Tv

      None of that explanation constitutes or justifies the 50K price tag.

    22. Nikos Per

      9 minutes of waste of time

    23. Jeppe Boelsmand

      How do they get the piston into the engine the first time?

    24. Brian

      well that was boring

    25. Kyle Rogers

      I think it's also worth mentioning that F1 teams use Aluminum for pistons because they are required to. There are superior piston materials available (Beryllium/Copper alloys for instance), but the rules no longer permit this.

    26. ngc 5139

      No it doesn't cost that. I can provide you one for less than a thousand quid - identical to what you are holding - and I'm making a profit at that.

    27. Bjorn Egan

      you took about 1 minute of information and stretched it into a 9 minute video... booo

    28. mircea miclos

      Road relevant in F1 is a utopia. How many exotic metal's are use in a F1 engine ?

    29. SlingbladeJim

      Now THAT was fascinating..................thank you.

    30. Phillip Atencio

      Sneaky ad placement

    31. babalooey100

      That's all very impressive. But it's not worth 50K per piston!

    32. doug b

      Well the block has to be heated to put the piston and it’s rings in the thing. Wow

    33. Poppa Koils

      Nice looking burr on the piston head at 5:56.

    34. finaleoftheseason

      Do you ever get tired talking like that?

    35. behemothinferno

      I think you overlooked the most important factor that makes F1 pistons so expensive. It's the fact that they are not made in the billions but thousands!

    36. John Martlew

      Me: I want to go really fast, really efficiently. What’s it going to cost? Engineer : Ohhhh yes!

    37. Jonki Pastramki

      The pushy yogurt compatibly pour because olive contextually applaud besides a fancy part. insidious, tender tense stinger

    38. krvnjrcbs

      What's an almulinium?

      1. illusion nl


    39. 6Hundred6ixty6ix

      Okay so why do they cost $50,000 you're explaining how a piston works. I will bet you $50,000 that a piston doesn't cost $50,000.

    40. V12BigBlock

      That thing could be made out of gold and it wouldn't justify the 50k price tag, something seriously wrong here, check your numbers again, you might have pulled something out of your bottom hole

    41. Daniele Vetrucci

      5:43 Force is 588 N = 60kg not 600kg

    42. getplaning

      Same reason a pro racing bicycle is $50,000. They are made one at a time.

    43. Felipe Behrens

      Darn... that’s complicated. Just use an electric race car...

    44. Zack Herr

      0.15mm is 6 thou not 60 thou :)

    45. Minorto Terona

      soo. if F1 engine stays cold for long enough, its pistons and piston block might end cold welded huh

    46. JohnJaggerJack

      What the difference between a H6 and H5 hole tolerance? H6 is fancy words for a H5 with surface finish.

    47. A M

      Great video

    48. Acg blah

      The cost comes from ineptitude and failure of imagination.

    49. Tsam Racing

      suzuki fx 125 original piston cost 100k euros...F1 its a toy

    50. Tom Tom

      I think they saw you coming

    51. Ian Mangham

      Never been worth 50k , total rip off

    52. Elondra Emberheart

      Do they have to heat up the parts to assemble and disassemble the engines too? That sounds pretty challenging

    53. Fadzil Hafizi

      Some people pointed about the over-inflated price inaccuracy. Is it for clickbait purposes?

    54. Jim Bartz

      thumbs down for the ads

    55. Артём Пулинец

      And here comes tesla roadster

    56. Jesse Folk

      People would be confused if they knew what material they use now on pistons in f1 👀

    57. crusherbmx

      If you've ever seen that video about Cosworth and the Beatrice/ Haas team building a turbo engine using fully old school methods like using a wooden pattern for the block, it's amazing how much technology is used these days. The fancy machines were around in the 80's, but out of reach to most F1 teams.....and weirdly, the new Haas F1 team, completely unrelated to the 80's team, is owned by a company that makes these machines.

    58. crusherbmx

      Seems weird to have to warm an engine before you start it.....but then again, I live in a cold place and we usually put heaters on our road car engines overnight so they will start in the morning.....and I didn't do that last night....wish me luck, it's -32c right now.

    59. Ricardo Fahlbusch

      At 3:04 your value of 39.09 mm does not fit that tolerance. I believe you actually meant 39.99 mm. Elsewise your gap between biggest and smallest would be almost 1 mm (0.92). Keep goin'!

    60. Blame USA

      yes but this is all BS money making! Just use larger cheaper engines..... more power less cost..... Just a money grab like everything!

    61. Rafael Lastra com

      50,000 quid for one piston? Can´t be right mate.

    62. Jesusiscomingbacksoon,lookup Romans10:9-10nbesaved!

      Have you accepted Jesus as your Savior and Lord? If not, please do so. The end times are here, and we are nearing the end. If yes, I would like to exhort you and me to walk in obedience to God's will every day. Have a nice day, and God bless!

    63. fuckingpippaman

      So you didn't explain why they cost so much eh.... lol. I would say they cost 50000 pounds but they are not actually worth so much. Come on modern measuring machines by default have a resolution of 1um, then if they really have a precision of that magnitude is another topic. And ffs my 2 stroke original street scooter ha tolerances on the diameter of +-2,5 um on his pistons...... it was produced 20 years ago and a piston sells for 80 bucks so really....... come on. X-ray i bet my asshole they x-ray also production pistons. In batches surely, hell they could implement automatic radioscopy on every single piston produced if they wanted for little extra cost. They don't because its not needed the quality is already high. You missed on penetrant testing though probably. I may say from my ignorance that F1 pistons cost so much because there is a bunch of assholes measuring 100 pistons and throwing away 98 of them. Doing x-ray by hand, penetrant testing on each one of them etc. I would guess they don't cost so much point 1; point 2 they are pretty much the same as a production piston material and machining wise; point 3 they might cost 50000£ (that i don't actually believe cause its a ripoff) beacuse they are custom made in small batches, high reject rate, and singular hand made NDT on them. But they're aren't surely WORTH 50,000£ they're just normal pistons, just a little better selected.

    64. James Simester

      I can assure you what you are seeing is not an F1 piston...

    65. peterjohnsracing

      complete load of bollocks really, f1 pistons are priceless because you can't buy them! Our pistons are made by Cosworth and they retail @ £265

    66. wololo10


    67. Nick Purdy

      Driver61......I have no particular idea why this has become an issue for me, but I ask of you to please, please speak with a flow to your sentencing. Your descriptions on each of your videos are certainly more than adequate but although your wording is grammatically fine, there is too much stress placed upon the divisions of clusters of words in a sentence, rather than deliberately breathing more freely and allowing a natural glide to take its place. I’m well aware that my specific comments probably have no place in your post but I would feel far more naturally drawn to your descriptive analysis of your subject matter and less consciously blindsided by your delivery if you might consider a marginally altered approach. All of this aside, many thanks for so much of the information which you continue to share, that of which I know little about.

    68. Robbie Tucker

      Very awesome video

    69. Malik Zulqarnain

      But metal contracts when cold and hence creates a lot of gap in between than why f1 engines seizes when cold, I still don't understand it?

    70. FastIndy

      I almost bought a coat without even knowing it

    71. Steve G.

      truth be told the main reason is simply that the cost of development and production is amortised over a greater volume of production in road car applications

    72. Sean Patterson

      The clearances (not tolerances) mentioned are nothing special. Most motorcycles run similar clearances, and a competent mechanic can resize cylinders with a hone and an electric drill. My guess is that most of the cost of the piston is to recover the money spent in development, and in the development of parts that never got sold.

    73. TheMainBrain Central

      Minecraft pistons brought me here

    74. Richard Siegers

      "Why F1 Pistons Cost £50,000!" they dont its the development costs that is so high not the actual price of the piston even a normal road car engine might have cost 100k-1m to develop but sins they produce so many of them they can spread the development costs out over more units

    75. riff1964

      Cool ... my favourite fact .... “the pistons are manufactured oval and become circular only at operating temperature”!

    76. SSS

      Ok, that's good but let's move to electric engine's.

    77. TBD Creations

      I would imagine the majority of the cost is in the engineering of them, or possibly just in the small size of the manufacturing runs. You mentioned tight tolerances, but +/-.01mm on a diameter is not tight enough to make a part massively expensive. The aluminum alloys they use are probably the most expensive aluminum alloys available, but aluminum is cheap so that isn’t saying much. Do you have a source for “Thousands of dollars of material in each piston”? I have a hard time believing the billet for each piston is more than $300

    78. Max Huang

      Actually, who taught you physics? 200g means 300g pistons has 600 N force, equal to 60kg, not 600kg Another miscalculation, piston change direction 300 time per second means 9000 rpm. Which f1 engine rev that low?

    79. Billy Mehaffey’s Common knowledge

      The piston wants to fly out of tithe bore while under compression? Your forgetting cylinder pressure taken into consideration. And what about crankcase counterweights countering the piston force?

    80. Billy Mehaffey’s Common knowledge

      Is there still crankcase pressure or do the rings seal that good?

    81. Billy Mehaffey’s Common knowledge

      I’m pretty sure piston weight is even more important than the exact specs. Other than the major and minor thrust skirt surfaces.

    82. Zlatko Sculac

      It costs a thousand times more, and it lasts a thousand times less .... What nonsense!

    83. Fast Bandit1250

      50 grand cannot be justified in the value of a piston, ever, wonder how much the crankshaft cost, the price of ten range rovers LOL

    84. PED

      0.4thou that’s not bad tolerance when CNC machining tbh

    85. Trubshaw2

      I knew we were in trouble in this video when a racing car driver was trying to explain engineering!I almost gave up he said that 0.15 of a millimetre was 60 thou! Having spent 46 years in the aerospace industry going all over the world machining components to extremely fine tolerances this video is a waste of space it’s does not by any means justify the cost of these pistons. Aluminium in the scale of things it’s not very expensive and machining is machining the machining centres operate around a hundred pounds an hour and I guarantee it does not take very long to machine these components. Forging is cheap also.

    86. eduardo sampoia

      50,000...give me a break...this sport is run by luciferians

    87. Janne Mäki-Heikkilä

      Did you know that it quit watching your video after the second advertisement.

    88. The Bezmen Killer.

      Buying a car with that money is more healthy ;)

    89. 177SCmaro

      Something about the way the English say "aluminum" makes me want to put on a monocle, top hat, take a sip of tea, and say "Indeed. Quite."

    90. Christiaan Ndoro

      I'm not convinced by the arguments presented. An aluminium beryllium alloy was banned from F1 by placing a maximum stiffness rule. This material costs about a couple of 100 dollars per kilo, not thousands. Let's say machining and inspection time costed $500 per hour, 10x higher than normal. Then a single piston would need 100hrs to make up 50k. I think the real cost is Intellectual property, but also its priced relative to (1) the high cost of everything else in the engine, and (2) the opportunity cost for the F1 team of a failed engine. I think its also priced because they can, a Ferarri MAF costs 5 times an Alfa Romeo MAF even though they are identical, different part numbers but identical

    91. Nelly Xavier

      cooollll....dissecting the internal guts of a F1 BEASTS .....YO

    92. zarbog8 61

      Very educational. Thank You!

    93. Fjord Trotter

      Why do motorcycle engines rev to 18000 rpm yet cost 1/10 of an F1 piston??? There must be some ingenious price manipulation gone into the engineers. They are not worth their weight in gold!!

    94. Ken

      I suspect there is some other reason the pistons are made non-round other than different material thicknesses responding differently to a change in temperature. All dimensions will scale identically when going from one uniform temperature to a second uniform temperature as long as the material structure is constant.

    95. Darmawan Wardhana

      I want to ask if a diesel engine like the Isuzu C 190 / C 223 has a piston ring gap / geep in the cylinder, how many m.m? thank you

    96. Rajesh Beniwal

      Low Volumes only reason

    97. Robert Rypuła

      I love when engineering videos mix imperial and metric system... ;) The whole point of metric system was to get rid of all inconsistencies. It started in 1970 but unfortunately still continues. By using non metric systems in 21st century we are just delaying the metrification process. IThomes channel makers are in the perfect position to finally complete this process in only one generation of people.

    98. 1mikewalsh

      I call bs! They prewarm to lessen wear, that motor will start at room temperature, but will be hard on it.

    99. Kalyan Reddy

      Is The same principle installed in race bike engines ? What make that faster?

    100. Robert Frisbee

      Why not build them using EDM which has tolerances of up to 0.001mm and allows for complex shapes with a diverse range of materials?