Audi has confirmed that Sauber will become the company’s factory F1 team. The automaker announced during the Belgian Grand Prix weekend that it is entering the sport from 2026. Then the news was that it would manufacture propulsion systems. It was rumored that an agreement had been reached with Sauber, which was confirmed today.
Audi x Sauber: The strategic partnership with the Sauber Group is the next important milestone on our road to @F1. The Swiss squad will be competing as an Audi factory team from 2026. #Audi #F1 #Formula1 #FutureIsAnAttitude pic.twitter.com/476HjWJ0Yh
— Audi Sport (@audisport) October 26, 2022
“Following the announcement of Audi’s entry into Formula 1 in August, it is now time to announce which strategic partner we will take the next step with,” the company said in a statement.
“With around 30 years of experience, Sauber Motorsport is one of the most established and traditional teams in Formula 1. The drive system will be created at the Audi center in Neuburg, and the car will be Sauber’s work at the base in Hinnville. Sauber will also be responsible for the planning and execution of the overall work of the team.”
“We are delighted to have such an experienced and competent partner to work with on our Formula 1 project,” noted Oliver Hoffmann.
“We already know that the Sauber Group has a first-class base and an experienced team from our previous cooperation. We are convinced that together we will create a strong team”, added the board member responsible for technical development at Audi.
“Audi is the best partner for the Sauber Group,” said Sauber Holding Chairman Finn Rausing.
“It is clear that both companies share the same values and vision. We look forward to achieving our common goals together through a highly successful partnership.”
Audi noted that the drive system, which will comply with the new rules coming into force in 2026, is already being worked on. More than 120 people are involved in the project. The staff in Neuburg is expected to reach 300 people. There, the attraction of new specialists continues, as well as the procurement of the necessary technical infrastructure. The first tests with the new unit in a Formula 1 car are planned for 2025.
The automobile manufacturer from Ingolstadt once again noted the direction of development of Formula 1 – towards sustainable business models and hybrid drives.
“This was an important factor in Audi’s decision to enter the championship. Propulsion systems will be more efficient than today’s. The power coming from the electrical part will increase significantly. The electric components will almost match the power of the internal combustion engine, which will amount to 400 kW (544 hp). The highly efficient 1.6-liter turbo engine will run on CO-free synthetic fuel2 emissions”, Audi also commented.
— Formula 1 (@F1) October 26, 2022