Michael Andretti, IndyCar, 2021

Andretti ‘has deal to use Renault power units and plans UK base’ for F1 team

2022 F1 season

Posted on

| Written by

Mario Andretti says his son is “all in and ready to go” with his F1 team plans and already has a deal in place for a supply of power units.

The 1978 world champion announced last week his son Michael has made an approach to the FIA to enter F1 as a new constructor in 2024. He has now confirmed the team will set up a base in Britain and has agreed a deal with Renault to use their V6 hybrid turbos.

Andretti said the family is pressing on with its plans in order to be ready to take to the grid a little over two years from now and lining up staff with expertise in bringing new entries onto the grid.

“We’re not just new boys in town,” he told David Land in an interview. “We know the prerequisites and also there’s a time factor here. Once we said go ahead, we’ve got to go.

“So a lot of work has been done. We know where the facility is going to be built in the UK. We know we have people, prominent individuals that have done this type of work as far as start-ups. We have a lot of things in mind.”

Earlier this week several F1 team bosses reacted coolly to the news of Andretti’s desire to expand the grid to 22 cars. Mercedes team principal Toto Wolff said they need to show “what it can do for the other teams, for Formula 1 and the FIA” to deserve a place in the series.

However the former Ferrari F1 driver believes Wolff was concerned his son would agree a deal to use the Scuderia’s engines. That would mean Mercedes and Ferrari supply an equal number of teams, potentially reducing Mercedes’ political clout, a situation which has been averted.

“We have formal agreement now on the engine supplier and it’s out there, it’s going to be Renault and I’m allowed to say it now,” Andretti confirmed. “There was a lot of speculation from Toto Wolff, he was concerned about potentially it being Ferrari, Ferrari would have more votes than he would have, so on and so forth.”

While the Andretti group is already active in many series including IndyCar, he acknowledged that stepping up to F1 would be a “quantum leap” for the team.

“There’s a lot of steps to take here and I understand that, it’s a huge undertaking. But we’re ready for it. We have incredible partners on our side, Michael does, and we’re there for the duration.

“Myself, I’ve been at it for 67 years now so we know what goes on on all sides of the Atlantic. And this is a great undertaking, a wonderful undertaking on Michael’s part. This shows that he’s very, very ambitious in the sport. That’s his business, period.

“We live and breathe motor racing only and he’s at the age now that he has to make the quantum leap, if you will, to be able to give it at least 20, 25 years, a good 25 years in a business. And that’s it, so we’re all in and we’re ready to go.”

Advert | Become a RaceFans supporter and go ad-free

2022 F1 season

Browse all 2022 F1 season articles

Author information

Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

Got a potential story, tip or enquiry? Find out more about RaceFans and contact us here.

21 comments on “Andretti ‘has deal to use Renault power units and plans UK base’ for F1 team”

  1. I wish him luck.

  2. The fact that Toto Wolff feels comfortable enough to state that the teams have a say in any new teams joining the sport is about as clear an indication that the sport is rotten as I can spot.

    This should not be a thing, ever. The FIA and FOM are the gatekeepers to the sport, not the participants. This shouldn’t ever be a thing and needs to be rectified if it actually is the case.

    1. Agree 100%. Teams should have no say in whom they might compete against. But Wolff thinks he’s the F1 god. Too many irons in the F1 fire.

      “Mercedes team principal Toto Wolff said they need to show “what it can do for the other teams, for Formula 1 and the FIA” to deserve a place in the series.”

    2. Well said! Andretti have a strong racing heritage and they seem very committed to their F1 projcet. Their fan base and history are justification for having them in F1. No teams should be objecting to the expansion of F1s reach that Andretti’s addition would bring. The real question should be why Wolff is trying to undermine F1s growth with his comments…

    3. The man never fails to disappoint us

  3. FIA is a figurehead and has been for awhile. Teams write the rules as well. The term sport should be used loosely.

    1. And good luck Michael! Haas as an American team has been underwhelming. It would be nice to see someone passionate about racing involved.

  4. More job for Dallara?

    1. @melthom I doubt it, unless Haas stop using Dallara. I think the reason Haas are able to utilise Dallara is because no one else does. For the parts Dallara make, I think the rule is somewhere along the lines of “they don’t have to be built in house, but one supplier can’t make parts for two teams” (depending in the types of parts in question). That’s my understanding at least. I may be wrong.

      1. You’re exactly right. It’s a constructor’s championship and no two teams can use the same car, except for certain parts (which Haas mostly gets from Ferrari).

        1. Well RandomMallard isn’t “exactly right”, since he/she is saying Dallara can’t build two different chassis that were constructed by different teams.

  5. Leafield Technical Centre has (finally) got the builders in, maybe related?

  6. Red, white and blue livery would be appropriate…
    (for the US/British/French alliance!)

  7. Still on the “andretti needs to show they can add value” comment from a few days ago can be oInly a negotiation tactic, but also a worry that the next US F1 team could turn out to be just another Haas.
    It might not make a lot of sense to bring a team just to be a Renault B team.

    1. It might not make a lot of sense to bring a team just to be a Renault B team.

      I’m not so sure about this. Renault (well, Alpine) are in a bit of a situation where they have lots of talent in the junior program but nowhere to put it in F1. Obviously Piastri is the latest and most notably victim, but Lundgaard, Zhou (going to Alfa instead) and others currently don’t/didn’t have a path into F1 with Alpine. So maybe another seat could be useful for them. Maybe not a full B-team like Alpha Tauri, but maybe a one seat agreement like Alfa Romeo had with Ferrari perhaps?

  8. Reading that headline, I thought they were talking about Marko taking on F1 duties ( hopefully not driving). I was scared for a couple of minutes.

  9. Only a few months ago Wolf was saying F1 should be a sport not entertainment. Now apparently it’s a business where you have to add value.

    Judge the entry by their performance on the track.

    I would much rather have a driver/family dynasty than a manufacturer or an investment group running a racing team.

    Good luck Andretti – can’t wait to have you in F1!

    1. Well, who’s family dynasty do you mean??? The .01% have really started coming in to F1 to play:

      Red Bull/Alpha Tauri – Dietrich Mateschitz – Red Bull drinks have printed his play money for decades and Christian is his voice on the scene.

      Mercedes – Toto is running the Mercedes show as a major stakeholder, but Ineos is right behind him with Jim Ratcliffe – obviously thrilled to be supporting his two fellow British drivers to take on the rest of the world in one of the best cars (and also scored the Hambach factory as part of his Mercedes buy in to jumpstart another billionaire pet project in the 4×4 Ineos Grenadier)

      Aston Martin – Lawrence Stroll – He obviously would like to follow both Toto’s and Mateschitz’s success path while also trying to let his son be part of it, also picked up Aston Martin prestige for pretty cheap in the meantime.

      McLaren – Been backed by the Bahrain royal family for ages, I also see the Latifi family has bought in a minority stake in case Nicholas turns out fast in the end.

      Williams – Calvin Lo, who clearly must have loved the William’s teams of the 80s/90s, is hopefully planning a full scale rescue mission to restore the team to its former glory.

      Ferrari – There is the old tobacco money behind the scenes and everyone can get access to this much loved name through the good old NYSE — maybe if you buy enough Ferrari RACE shares in the company it also gets you access to the rarer road cars buys.

      Alpine – I’m sure there are big time shareholders of Renault that love F1 and insist to the board for the company’s participation on the F1 grid — and would love to sit on top of that mountain with Alonso again.

      Haas – The American F1 team courtesy of Gene Haas, but clearly the team planning and building cars with 3rd party designs never bore fruit and no one will buy him out because there are no assets worth buying except maybe his team entry. This team is a cautionary tale to Andretti of how it shouldn’t be done.

      Alfa Romeo – clearly this was the original play by the Andretti group over the winter but they just couldn’t get enough control from the Swedish/Swiss billionaire boys of Longbow Finance. Not sure what their long term play is in F1, a slower Finnish driver isn’t the answer. Maybe they just are willing to hold station and enjoy the grid access until the next great Scandinavian driver comes along.

      I think the Andretti’s are not wealthy enough to do this on their own. I’m sure there are few more American buddy-billionaires (who also realize they can’t take it with them and probably had Mario as a racing hero growing up) contributing massive capital in exchange for silent shares in Andretti Motorsport to try and do this thing big. They don’t care about making money in F1 — they just want to watch their American hero take over F1 again one more time before they die. Its been a long time since 1978. I’m not sure if it can be done with a Renault unit. :)

      Best of luck! I hope they can get a spot and do it right.

  10. Given how great the Renault PU has been, they’re just about guaranteed to be near the back of the field or racking up DNF’s.

    That’s in jest but the Renault PU has hardly been anywhere near competitive since the turbo hybrid PU’s were introduced either in performance or reliability, particularly for customer PU’s.

  11. Alpine has no B team so it is perfect for Andretti Autosport to impulse 1 of their drivers to their main roster in the future. This will prove that Indy Car drivers do belong in Formula 1. But in my opinion, Alpine should have tested Newgarden.

  12. I still don’t get it why Mario is doing the talking and I haven’t seen any articles about Michael??

Comments are closed.