Today's drivers "will never know" what racing a "proper F1 car" is like.
That is the claim of 1992 world champion Nigel Mansell, who says the sport's best era was actually before his title with the super-powerful turbo engines of the 80s.
"Formula 1 will never get back to that," Mansell, now 65, told the FIA's Auto magazine.
"Driving those turbo cars was the most exhilarating, frightening thing that you could do in your life.
"The (1987) Williams FW11B -- nothing comes close to that car, nothing in the world. Really, today's drivers will never know what a proper F1 car feels like.
"In qualifying you literally had up to 1,500 horsepower -- it's reputed that BMW had more. And to have wheel spin in sixth gear down the straight, at 175 or 180mph -- you cannot put that into words as a driver.
"At every single corner you came to, the car was literally trying to kill you," Mansell added.