F1: New Ferrari V6s earn grid penalties for Vettel and Raikkonen

Ferrari drivers Kimi Raikkonen and Sebastian Vettel race side-by-side during the Russian Grand Prix at Sochi Autodrom.

Clive Mason/Getty Images

Sebastian Vettel and Kimi Raikkonen are set to take 10-place penalties in Austin as Ferrari introduces fresh V6 engines.

Both drivers have already used four engines, but the team has decided that it’s worth taking the hit for the United States Grand Prix to gain more performance for the last three races.

"It has always been the plan — it is not a big secret," Vettel said. "No surprise for us. It was always the plan for us to have the strongest engine available at every single point in the season, and I think our engine guys have done a massive job.

"So this should not be understood as a downside. If anything, this is a very positive sign because we have been pushing very hard, and the guys managed to make big steps in terms of performance."

It’s understood that the new engines feature some updates, but no tokens have been used. The news means that it’s less likely Vettel can keep the title battle alive until Mexico.

"Obviously, if you look at just this race, for sure it’s not great news," Vettel said. "But, then you have to look at the whole project and the whole season. As I said, the priority was always to have maximum power at every single race.

"It has worked very well so far. Obviously, we have to take the hit here, but you should see the positive, the fact that we were able to make big steps."