Audi and Porsche set to enter Formula One

Audi and Porsche set to enter Formula One

May 4, 2022

German car companies Audi and Porsche will be joining Formula One in 2026, as stated by Herbert Dies, CEO of the Volkswagen Group.

For several months now, it has been rumoured that the two brands are looking to enter the pinnacle of motorsports. It was reported that Audi was willing to offer €500 million for McLaren to enter, while Porsche was looking at entering through its long-term partnership with Red Bull. Porsche most likely will tie up with the Red Bull Powertrains programme for the 2026 technical regulations, which would see Porsche return to the sport after a gap of more than 30 years. McLaren, Alfa Romeo, Aston Martin and Williams are all linked with Audi’s entrance.

Audi recently withdrew from Formula E, its Dakar Rally project and even Le Mans 24 Hours, on which it was working with Porsche.

Commenting on what made Audi and Porsche make the switch now, Diess stated that the sport’s growth in Asia and the States along with a growing number of younger audiences tuning in were some of the main factors as to why Volkswagen decided to go ahead with it. Diess also stated Formula One’s emphasis on sustainability as an important factor.

When asked about what the final nail in the coffin was for arguments against joining, Diess said,
You just run out of arguments [against it].

As Markus Duesman (Audi chairman) always tells me, you usually make up one second per season on a medium-sized race track simply by optimising details.

But you can’t catch up on that when you join a new team: you need five or 10 years to be among the front runners. In other words, you can only get onboard if you have a major rule change. That’s coming now, and it will also come in the direction of 2026, when the engines will be electrified to a much greater extent, including with synthetic fuels. That means you need a new engine development and you need three or four years to develop a new engine.

That means you can decide now to do Formula 1 – or then probably not again for 10 years. And our two premium brands think that’s the right thing to do, and are prioritising it.

Official confirmation is still awaited, and it is reported that it could take a while and could likely happen during this season’s Austrian Grand Prix, which is Red Bull’s home race, and would be the perfect destination for Porsche’s entry announcement.

Aditya Chaudhuri

Hailing from the City of Joy, the things that bring me joy are cricket, a good non-tilt CS:GO session, F1 and movies.

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