car news formula 1

Ford returns to Formula One as partner of Red Bull Racing

February 3, 2023

Red Bull Racing has been running Honda engines since 2019. The cooperation with the Japanese brand has been very successful, as our well-known Red Bull driver Max Verstappen became world champion in 2021 and 2022. Red Bull Racing also won the constructors’ title again for the first time since 2013. Despite its success, Honda, to everyone’s surprise, decided to quit as an engine supplier. Since Red Bull Racing did not want to buy an engine from a competitor, Red Bull Powertrains was quickly established to produce the engines independently. In the end, Honda did remain involved and, together with Red Bull Powertrains, is producing the F1 engines through the 2025 season.

Red Bull Ford Powertrains

Starting in 2026, things are going to change again regarding Formula 1 regulations. Among other things, the F1 hybrid powerplant will get a 350 kW electric motor and the 1.6-liter V6 turbo will run on 100% renewable fuel. To develop this highly complicated and advanced power unit, Red Bull Racing sought a partner and has now found it with Ford. The US auto group will also focus on crucial developments in battery cells, electric motor technology and control and analysis software. With that, they are already starting this year under the name Red Bull Ford Powertrains. In addition to Red Bull Racing, Red Bull Ford Powertrains is also developing the power unit for Alpha Tauri’s F1 team. The partnership between Ford and Red Bull will last at least until the 2030 season.

Ford back to Formula One

For Ford, the partnership with reigning world champion Red Bull Racing is obviously a great opportunity to make a name for itself again in Formula One, the king class in motorsports and one of the most watched sporting events in the world. Ford left Formula One more than 20 years ago when the Jaguar F1 team (then owned by Ford) was sold to – note – Red Bull. Red Bull’s team was still running a Cosworth-built Ford engine in 2005. Ford, by the way, is still third in the list of engine suppliers with the most F1 victories.

Leveraging expertise for production cars

Other important reason for getting into Formula One is the knowledge that comes from it. Ford wants to become a major global player in electric cars and says it is investing $50 billion to be at the forefront of the EV revolution. In addition, there is a promising future for 100% renewable fuels (e-fuels). By racing this fuel, much knowledge and experience is gained. The collaboration with Red Bull Racing should contribute positively to Ford’s future (electric) production models. For the same reason, Audi will supply engines to Sauber’s F1 team from 2026 and Cadillac is eager to establish an F1 team with the American Andretti.