Porsche and Audi possibly entering F1 as engine manufacturer
We're only four races into the 2022 Formula One season, and it's turning out to be an exciting year ahead. But apparently, the party's just getting started. In four years' time, we'll see two legendary brands in motorsport enter the Formula One grid.
VW Group CEO Herbert Diess has revealed that Porsche and Audi are set to join the Formula One party in 2026 as possible engine suppliers. Even though both brands come from the Volkswagen group, the two will enter the sport separately using their own names.
So why are Porsche and Audi entering F1 in 2026 and not next season? Well, 2026 is the year when Formula One gets a new set of engine regulations, which will be the first major shake-up since the turbo hybrids were introduced in 2014. The new rules open up the possibility for other manufacturers to enter the sport, as it eliminates the years of development advantage that current F1 engine manufacturers have over newcomers.
The VW Group CEO also mentioned that it takes three to four years to develop a competitive F1 engine, so the decision had to be made sooner to be ready for 2026. As we all know, Honda had to endure five long years before becoming competitive enough to challenge for the title with Red Bull. Starting from 2026 will basically see Porsche and Audi enter the sport on a level playing field.
While Diess did not disclose which teams will have Porsche and Audi engines, rumor has it that Porsche could collaborate with Red Bull, and Audi could possibly join forces with McLaren. Currently, Red Bull is using Honda engines rebranded as Red Bull Powertrains. With their partnership set to expire at the end of 2025, the Red Bull-Porsche pairing could be a likely possibility.
On the other hand, the recent management change in McLaren could pave the way for Audi's entry into F1, especially since McLaren Automotive's new CEO Michael Leiters was once an instrumental figure in the VW Group under the Porsche brand.
Of course, we'll have to wait and see if both of those possibilities will materialize in the future. But for now, let's just imagine the fact that in four years' time, Ferrari, Mercedes, Porsche, Audi, and Renault could all battle for F1 supremacy. As they say, the more, the merrier. So which manufacturer would you like to see enter F1 next? Let us know in the comments.