Audi confirms Formula 1 entry from 2026 as sport welcomes Volkswagen brand

Last updated: 08/26/22 08:28

Audi has confirmed its entry into Formula 1 from 2026.

The luxury brand is expected to partner with Sauber, although so far it has only announced that it will make engines from 2026.

The entry of Volkswagen-owned brands Audi and Porsche into F1 has been one of the sport’s worst-kept secrets in recent months, and Audi was the first to confirm its plans ahead of this weekend’s Belgian GP.

Audi has previously been linked with a partnership with McLaren but has reportedly turned its attention to Sauber, which currently runs under the Alfa Romeo banner but has been in talks with other brands.

Audi, whose announcement comes weeks after engine regulations were confirmed for 2026, plans to develop its own engines, with the chassis expected to remain developed at Sauber’s Swiss facility.

Daniel Ricciardo sat down with Rachael Brookes to discuss leaving McLaren.

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Daniel Ricciardo sat down with Rachael Brookes to discuss leaving McLaren.

Daniel Ricciardo sat down with Rachael Brookes to discuss leaving McLaren.

“I am delighted to welcome Audi to Formula 1, an iconic automotive brand, pioneer and technological innovator,” said F1 President Stefano Domenicali.

“This is an important moment for our sport that underscores the tremendous strength we have as a global platform that continues to grow.

“It is also a great acknowledgment that our shift to sustainably powered hybrid engines in 2026 is a future solution for the automotive sector. We are all looking forward to seeing the Audi logo on the grid and will hear more details from them on their plans in due course.”

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Volkswagen’s German rival Mercedes has dominated Formula One for much of the past decade, but the manufacturing giant has not been involved in the sport before.

However, it has worked with Red Bull in the World Rally Championship.

Porsche is expected to join forces with Red Bull, with whom they have been associated for several years and who have their own powertrains division focused on the changes coming in 2026.

Speaking of the potential arrival of the luxury brands earlier this year, Lewis Hamilton said: “I think it’s great that we are bringing new manufacturers into the sport, especially as you see there are several teams that have the potential to be top teams Customer teams, so I think it’s going to be great to move forward.”

Max Verstappen added: “I find it very exciting and also very important for Formula 1.

“Of course we have great teams, but to have really great brands behind it is really nice. I’m excited to see what the future will bring.”

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