Red Bull taps Nissan's battery tech

* Red Bull F1 visits Nissan technical centre * Infiniti has two-year sponsorship deal with F1 team * Relationship to benefit 'each other'...

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What Car? Staff
24 May 2011

Infiniti's and Nissan's road car experts are being called upon to boost the speed of the Red Bull Racing Formula One car.

Having signed a two-year sponsorship deal with Infiniti at the start of this season, Red Bull now wants to find ways to collaborate on technical projects with the car maker and its parent company Nissan.

It has already had meetings with personnel at Nissan's UK technical centre in Cranfield, and will send race engineers to Nissan's R&D centre in Japan.

KERS system help
The reigning F1 world championship-winning team has been dominant so far this season, winning all but one race, but has consistently struggled to make its KERS energy recovery system work. This is likely to be the first area the two collaborate on although in the longer-term, both sides are looking to benefit from the other's expertise.

Nissan leads the way in production car battery technology and Red Bull Racing hopes that it can tap into the manufacturer's knowledge to make its KERS system more reliable and more powerful.

'As a team that's previously been independent of a car manufacturer, it's an exciting opportunity to have access to their research,' said Red Bull F1 boss Christian Horner.

'Our budget into battery technology is minuscule compared with Nissan's, and they are working on developments a long way in advance of what's commercially available today.

'Hopefully they can help us, and then we can help them by effectively testing their prototypes in extreme conditions.'

Nissan and Infiniti motorsport boss Simon Sproule added: 'There are clear areas of common interest; we want smaller, lighter batteries in our road cars, as Red Bull does on its race cars. We both want the batteries with the most energy density.