What was Paddy Lowe doing in Maranello at the start of the week? Anyone who saw the 60-year-old English engineer wandering around the Gestione Sportiva immediately thought of a possible involvement in the Scuderia. But there is none of it true, even if the former technical director of Williams, Mercedes and McLaren was seen having lunch with Piero Ferrari, Ferrari vice president at the Smeraldo restaurant in Lello Apicella.
Let’s make it clear right away: Formula 1 had nothing to do with it. The English engineer came to Italy because, among the various consultancy activities he carries out, he now also deals with alternative fuels.
After a thirty-year history in the Circus, Paddy co-founded a start-up in 2020, Zero Petroleum, a London-based company born to produce e-fuel, i.e. synthetic gasoline that has no petroleum derivatives and therefore can be an alternative also to waste fuels and biofuels, having almost zero impact.
The fuel proposed by Paddy Lowe to Ferrari is a mix of carbon dioxide and green hydrogen made liquid, with characteristics similar to 95 NO petrol. A boon for the red supercars that will have to deal with the reduction of emissions: e-fuel, which F1 will adopt from 2026 with the new power units, could represent a valid alternative to electric to keep engines alive endothermic, allowing even the precious used Cavallino and historic cars to continue to run, without the constraints that European policy would like to implement.
Lowe therefore went knocking on Ferrari to propose solutions already on the market, given that Porsche, for example, moves autonomously: in collaboration with Siemens and Enel the German company went to Chile in search of the best conditions for synthesizing fuels at acceptable costs thanks to the availability of a lot of renewable energy.
Will we see Lowe again in Maranello? We hope so…
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