SportF1Audi presents its F1 program and reveals some details

Audi presents its F1 program and reveals some details

After Audi made its entry into Formula 1 official at the end of August, the manufacturer of the four rings wanted to present its project this Monday in Madrid, the new company Audi Formula 1 Racing. There, they have shown a single-seater concept for the highest category and have unraveled some of the keys to their program.

In that act in which Motorsport.com has been, the CEO of the brand, Adam Baker (former of Cosworth, Jaguar, Minardi or BMW) has given hints of the new adventure of Audi and has answered the questions of the journalists there presents.

The Volkswagen Group saw in the new engine regulations that F1 will premiere in 2026 a great opportunity to join the grid, and precisely that its entry coincides with the start of a new cycle is what encourages Audi not to make mistakes in those dropped by other manufacturers in the past.

“It is a very good opportunity for Audi because it is a new era, with new engines and new chassis, in which efficiency is going to prevail. It is a time of high efficiency, with sustainable fuels and others and it is a great opportunity for us. Baker declared.

“Motorsport is part of the DNA and F1 is the pinnacle of motorsport, and that’s why we want to be part of this transformation of F1 and look to the future to help Audi in the new mobility, in terms of efficiency, fuel, etc. In addition F1 is a great marketing platform to show the great potential that Audi has.”

Although the engine will be for the 2026 season, Baker confirmed that they are already working and developing the power unit, although as they will not know until 2023 which chassis will carry their engine, there is still nothing to do in that regard.

“We are already working on the engines. Also, the timing is correct, because we will start two years before the rule change.”

At Audi they know the difficulty of the challenge, but unlike other brands that entered mid-cycle, they will enter at the beginning of the new era of engines, when everyone has to start from scratch to develop the engine. That gives them time to prepare and eases the tremendous challenge that it is to get into Formula 1.

“We have already reached the number of 130 people working on the project and we hope to end up being about 300 people, and we will be within the budget limit from 2023.”

“We have the advantage that we arrive with a new regulation and, furthermore, with a budget limit, which will make our entry easier than when other brands like Honda arrived in the past with a more stable regulation and without a cost limit”.

Thus, Audi sees a “three-year period to be at the top” as “reasonable”, but they admit that they arrive with realistic goals and are aware of how complicated F1 is.

Which team will Audi enter F1 with?

Although it is taken for granted that they will join Sauber for the Alfa Romeo square, at Audi they insist that nothing has been decided, and they assure that they have considered all the options, both entering as a new team and buying a team already existing. His decision will come before the end of the year.

“In principle, we will join an existing partner.”

“We can’t talk about Sauber, but finding the right partner is key, because that’s what will ultimately allow us to be successful in the future.”

By regulation, an engine manufacturer has to make its power unit available to teams that want to become customers and, when that time comes, Audi will study the option: “Right now we are focused on our own program.”

And what drivers will Audi have in Formula 1?

In that sense, Audi believes that it is too early to talk or decide on drivers: “The market will change a lot in the face of 2026, so there is nothing thought about in terms of the lineup of regular drivers or developers. The profile of pilot we want”.

When asked about the possibility of having Carlos Sainz, Baker did not hide that he would be a great option, but insists that it is soon: “It would be fantastic to be able to have Carlos Sainz, but 2026 is very far away”.

Of course, the CEO of Audi pointed out the importance of having an expert driver for the preparation phase: “The entire development phase is very important, and having an experienced driver in that development phase will be essential.”

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