Honda will leave Formula 1 as an engine manufacturer at the end of the season but that will not be the end of their championship history, with the Japanese manufacturer revealing that they will continue to work with Red Bull on a number of projects …
Honda has chosen to leave F1 to focus on its goal of achieving carbon neutrality across the automotive company, but has agreed to continue developing its F1 power unit for Red Bull for 2022, which will be overseen. by a new company – Red Bull Powertrains.
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It has now been confirmed that Red Bull and Honda have reached a deal that will allow the company to use Honda IP from 2022 for the specific purpose of supplying engines to their factory team and to AlphaTauri.
Honda will also continue to help build the powertrain in 2022, as well as provide track and race operations support from Japan throughout the campaign. From 2023, Red Bull Powertrains will take full responsibility for the manufacture and maintenance of the engines.
Red Bull – which showcases a special Honda tribute livery in Turkey this weekend – will also hire employees from Honda’s UK base in Milton Keynes as part of their new engine operation.
The relationship also extends to the drivers, with the two companies – who worked together to bring Yuki Tsunoda into Formula 1 with AlphaTauri – to continue their partnership to “further promote the growth of motorsport in Japan, with the ultimate goal of bring more Japanese drivers into top-level motorsport ”.
And there will be other undefined collaborations in other motorsport activities, with Honda keen to promote its range of mobility products to a wider audience.
“We are very pleased that our ambitious and exciting Red Bull Powertrains project is being strongly supported by Honda, technically and operationally, in 2022 and this will help ensure that Red Bull’s transition to being a chassis and powertrain manufacturer takes place. go smoothly, ”said Red Bull boss Christian Horner.
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Equally exciting is the news that our collaboration with Honda will extend to a variety of motorsport activities, from driver development to other racing disciplines and even across the sporting world at large. This part of Honda’s Formula 1 journey is drawing to a close, but together we embark on a new and fascinating journey.
Honda’s general manager of branding and communications operations Koji Watanabe added: “I am glad that we have reached an agreement with Red Bull Group covering all the details of the intellectual property rights for the F1 Power Unit and in this way. , Honda can still make a contribution to the racing world.
Lawrence Barretto, editor-in-chief of F1.com, says …
Red Bull and Honda have been working on this announcement for months, with both sides seeing the great benefits of continuing a fruitful and very happy collaboration.
Honda’s support next year, along with the addition of its UK staff who are well versed in the powertrain and technology, will help them make the smoothest possible transition to operating the powertrains themselves in 2023. until the introduction of the new engine formula.
Meanwhile, Honda has the opportunity to maintain a connection to what has grown into a world championship powertrain of which they can be proud.
This is also good news for Tsunoda. I understand that when the Japanese driver was recruited into the Red Bull program – and subsequently Formula 1 – the plan was still long term.
Despite having had a top-down rookie season, that long-term vision remains and Honda’s confirmation that they will continue to work with Red Bull to provide a path for young Japanese drivers to F1 only reinforces. that.
Tsunoda needs to keep improving, but he can be reassured that Honda and Red Bull intend to give him time to realize his potential.