Alpine interim Team Principal Bruno Famin believes that the addition of new power unit technical director Eric Meignan will “challenge” the outfit ahead of rule changes due in 2026.
Meignan joined Alpine in October following a three-year stint in Maranello as Head of Department of Ferraris power unit division. He had previously held the same title for four years, heading Mercedes’ High Performance Powertrains programme.
Meignan will now lead the Alpine Formula 1 team’s preparations for the upcoming 2026 power unit changes which will see the removal of the existing MGU-H system.
A 50/50 split between electric power from a beefed-up MGU-K and sustainably fuelled V6 turbo engine is targeted.
Wide-sweeping changes were announced by Alpine during the Belgian Grand Prix weekend with the departure of then Team Principal Otmar Szafnauer, Sporting Director Alan Permane, while Pat Fry was announced to be defecting to Williams as its Chief Technical Officer.
“We’re very happy to welcome Eric in Viry and I think he will bring a lot because he’s an experienced guy in Formula 1 and I think he will challenge our team,” Famin said in Mexico.
“He’s coming at the right time to challenge our guys to better prepare the 2026 power unit generation.
“I’m very confident that he will do a very good job with all the guys in Viry, he has started already and I think he will very quickly be operational.”
The appointment of Meignan should free up Famin, who himself is an engine specialist.
The interim boss currently splits his time between the chassis department in Enstone and the power unit facilities in Viry-Châtillon has found himself assuming additional roles at the French marque following the departures of senior staff.
“For sure. I have quite a lot to focus on,” Famin said as he began to explain how the new addition to his power unit department will impact his work schedule,” he added.
“It will be a strong support on the technical side. We have good technical guys in Viry already but I think to have a full-time, on-site technical director will really help everybody.”
Earlier this year, the French outfit had claimed its Renault engines were at a 30bhp disadvantage compared to rivals and had hopes for the sport to introduce engine equalisation measures.
However, Alpine will need to cope with any deficit after opposition from competitors including Mercedes and Ferrari, who claimed that the French outfit’s concerns were exaggerated and therefore not worth consideration.