After almost 20 years away from the motorsport, is returning to . The automaker is teaming up with to develop a next-gen hybrid power unit for Red Bull Racing and sibling team AlphaTauri. The teams will use the Ford-powered engines between 2026 and at least 2030. Ford will supply "expertise in areas including battery cell and electric motor technology as well as power unit control software and analytics," according to .
Ford has a long history in Formula 1 dating back to the 1960s. As an engine manufacturer, it in 13 drivers’ championships and 10 constructors’ championships before it stepped away from the sport in 2004. However, upcoming rule changes regarding increased engine electrification and prompted Ford to make a comeback.
“Ford’s return to Formula 1 with Red Bull Racing is all about where we are going as a company — increasingly electric, software-defined, modern vehicles and experiences,” Ford president and CEO Jim Farley said. “F1 will be an incredibly cost-effective platform to innovate, share ideas and technologies and engage with tens of millions of new customers.”
Red Bull started building its own F1 engine for the first time as Honda, its current partner, is to place more of its attention on fuel cell and EV technology. Although Honda officially departed F1 at the end of 2021, it's continuing to support Red Bull until new engine rules come into force in 2026, as notes. It was expected that Red Bull would need some assistance to build a hybrid system.
Audi announced last year that it will . This week, it was revealed that the automaker has bought a minority stake in Sauber, which will become .