Porsche confirms it will not enter Formula 1 with Red Bull

2022 Italian Grand Prix

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Porsche has officially confirmed its discussions with Red Bull about a future move into Formula 1 have been terminated without agreement.

However the manufacturer said a move into the series at a future point still remains attractive.

The F1 team and road car manufacturer have been in talks for months about joining forces. The introduction of new engine regulations for the 2026 season has already prompted a commitment from Porsche’s fellow Volkswagen Group brand Audi.

In May, then-VW Group CEO Herbert Diess said both manufacturers had “decided to enter Formula 1”, citing the rising interest in the series. At the time he referred to Porsche’s plans as “already relatively concrete” but Audi’s “not so much”.

However, while Audi confirmed its impending arrival last month, Porsche’s talks with Red Bull reached an irresolvable impasse.

“In the course of the last few months, Porsche AG and Red Bull GmbH have held talks on the possibility of Porsche’s entry into Formula 1,” said a statement from Porsche. “The two companies have now jointly come to the conclusion that these talks will no longer be continued.”

The two parties were unable to agree terms around the extent of Porsche’s integration into the Red Bull team.

“The premise was always that a partnership would be based on an equal footing, which would include not only an engine partnership but also the team,” said Porsche’s statement. “This could not be achieved.”

However he indicated the manufacturer is leaving the door open to a future move into F1. “With the finalised rule changes, the racing series nevertheless remains an attractive environment for Porsche, which will continue to be monitored,” it concluded.

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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...

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51 comments on “Porsche confirms it will not enter Formula 1 with Red Bull”

  1. Woahhh – big news. Yeah, I kind of felt Red Bull were in a much more attractive position than Porsche. Red Bull can already build its own engines (in a way, but it seems to be progressing). I can understand them not wanting to let Porsche into the actual team also.

    1. @bernasaurus

      Red Bull can already build its own engines (in a way, but it seems to be progressing)

      I don’t know how they could be in that position as Honda is not sharing any of their tech with RB, and with Honda apparently still undecided about their future in F1 RB will remain a customer.

      1. @johnrkh Yeah, I have no idea what Red Bull Powertrains looks like or what it’s capable of. But wasn’t their goal to be in a position to develop the engines themselves and try and get to a Ferrari / Mercedes type situation where they do it all?

        I honestly don’t know.

        1. Not just their goal, but what they’re actively doing. They have full facilities, full staff, some of the brightest talent that worked on F1 engines in the past decades under them. So yes, they are actively developing and can build a 2026 spec engine when the time comes.

          1. @bernasaurus I think they’re in a bit of a pickle, when they announced their plan to build their own PUs it was supposed to be with Honda. Honda refused to get involved and instead RB had to extend the existing supply deal.
            @sjaakfoo If RB had the ability to design and build their own PUs why would they be pursuing a deal with Honda then Porsche?
            I posted about the difficulties and costs of designing a PU from scratch and said that it would be ridiculous for RB to attempt such a thing alone as they would have no way to recoup their investment.
            Nothing has changed RB may have done themselves a disservice here. They need to partner with someone to help with initial development and ongoing costs and a way to re-coup them later on.

          2. They already fired up an engine last month, at that.

            Why would they pursue a deal? Answer is simple, they’re not. The reason there’s no deal is because Red Bull shut them down, that alone should tell you it’s not a necessity for them. Why would they entertain an offer from Porsche? Because there’s no reason to turn them down and take advantage of their expertise and save hundreds of millions a year as well. They don’t need to partner with anyone, or they would have let their hand be forced. Does that mean that if Honda comes knocking it makes sense to shut them down? Of course not. There’s advantages to a partnership with a motor company under the right terms, but it doesn’t mean it’s Red Bull’s only option, as evidenced here.

      2. John, Red Bull had their first engine on the test bench before the summer break.

        It could only be a single cylinder test.
        However, it is very impressive to plan, setup and build an engine manufacturing facility and build your first prototype engine within a year.

  2. Unsurprising after recent times, but they’ll have to team up with another team instead or form a fully-fledged manufacturer team.

  3. So glad Formula 1 jumped through all of Volkswagen’s hoops and dumped a hugely important part of its hybrid power train … for nothing.

    1. Well Audi have decided to become an engine manufacturer…so it wasn’t completely for nothing.

      But I agree, F1’s obsession with getting VW AG into F1 has to stop now. Audi has decided to join but I am sure they’ll be gone within a decade, so what exactly was the point of it all.

    2. @proesterchen I would be very unhappy if I was F1, as you say they dumped the most important, although the most difficult part from a technical perspective, in the hope of getting more manufacturers on board.

      At what point do they decide that they would be better off sticking with what they have got rather than redesigning well developed engines? Audi’s commitment alone to me isn’t a good enough reason to have no engine regulations.

      1. *new engine regulations.

        1. @chimaera2003 Yeah – the argument that the problem with manufacturers is that they are governed by boards and come and go as they please. Where as teams stay for the long haul.

          If Porsche don’t come in – you could argue they quit before anyone even showed them where the bathroom was.

        2. I don’t think new engine regulations are an issue. I do think dropping the MGU-H, is however.

  4. Wonder if Mclaren will try stepping in to develop another engine for Red Bull to take over after a few fruitless years. Williams would also potentially be a good match but it’s whether they’d be seen as competitive enough as a starting point for a Porsche venture.
    Wonder if Red Bull will continue with their own powertrain or have already agreed something in principal with Honda for the future.

    1. I can’t recall McLaren ever having developed an F1 engine. Always bought one in – Ford DFV, Porsche (branded as TAG-Heuer), Lambourghini, Peugeot, Mercedes, Honda and Renault.

      Even their road cars use bought in engines.

      1. @mrfill I think you may have misunderstood my sentiment when I said they developed the engine. By develop I mean they ran the engine and worked with the manufacturer from the start. They actually did this with Peugoet, Mercedes (albeit after Sauber initially) and the current Honda engine so they actually have a pretty long record of working with emerging engine suppliers in F1.

        I was not saying they built the engines because clearly they are not an engine builder but they have worked with other companies to develop engines and more so than many constructors on the grid now.

        1. They didn’t do so well with Peugeot (dumped after one year and no wins) or the Honda (‘GP2 engine, GP2 engine’). They did well when the Merc works team but then declined again when becoming a customer so moved to Honda (disaster) and then Renault (disaster).
          Its not a very impressive track record.

          1. @mrfill how many new engines in F1 were instantly successful?

            The Peugoet engine was indeed dumped to make way for the Mercedes power unit and then went to other teams that didn’t really push it forward.

            The Mercedes engine was arguably best in class from 1997-2010. It probably lost out a little to the Renault because it wasn’t quite as tunable to exhaust blowing when that was key but was probably still more powerful. The Mercedes engine didn’t decline, it was just the Renault engine was close enough on power and the exhaust blown defuser made a bigger difference than the power.

            The Honda engine was a complete disaster and they only started getting a hang on it at the end of their relationship which is why Red Bull were happy to pick them up. The fact Red Bull allowed them more options on layout design probably also helped them develop more power and reliability in that first year of their relationship.

            I never said Mclaren were good at developing the engines, I merely highlighted the last time they took onboard a new engine supplier, Red Bull benefitted from it later. The Mercedes engines they started with and the Honda though both went on to win championships in recent years. Obviously going further back they had other successful partnerships but I don’t think that has much relevance to the current team.

      2. Porsche (branded as TAG-Heuer)

        Branded as TAG, not TAG Heuer.

        TAG Heuer didn’t come into existence until 1985, half way through TAG’s relationship with McLaren/Porsche. Even then though the branding didn’t change, they were always McLaren-TAG right through until the end of 1987.

  5. “So does that mean it’s not coming on then”

    Maybe some other team then?

    1. @qeki
      I don’t see any serious options for them at the moment. McLaren already turned down Audi, Williams is on a downwards spiral since 2018 (also don’t have the infrastructure and human ressources needed) and Aston Martin…well, there are the Strolls.
      Only Aston Martin would have the human, technical and financial ressources for it to be an attractive option for a big car manufacturer like Porsche. But as long as Lawrence Stroll is keeping his son there and keeps interferring with the racing team’s business, I don’t see Porsche jumping onboard.

  6. Well, I’m not sure how long a commitment that would be considering they already have another brand in the sport.
    Next big thing happens, good or bad, and it’s so easy for the VW board to go “well, surely one’s enough?”

    Also, I struggle to see the appeal for RB except money – and considering they aren’t too short on that you’d need to offer the money as a part of a good package. Losing a bit too much control over the best team in F1 probably doesn’t make for one.

  7. Maybe VW planted Porsche into these negotiation s to use as a bargaining tool to get the Hybrid engine rules changed to suit them. Also the talk of Porsche just buying out Red Bull’s engine department and rebadging as Porsche sounded Sus because Honda would probably have tech in their that they wouldn’t want other manufacturers to see

    1. Very possible.

  8. It was already sort of announced earlier this week when Horner and Marko stated they won’t be selling any of RB’s shares to Porsche. RB want to keep full control of the team and also had a back-up plan with RB Powertrains in case the Porsche move would fail. Honda returning or staying beyond 2025 isn’t off the table as well.
    Apparently RB was afraid that if they joined forces with Porsche, it would be more difficult to make quick decisions, because everything needs to get approved by the Porsche board before and that may’ve taken much longer than how RB currently can get things done.
    There is also some uncertainty regarding Didi Mateschitz’s health condition, meaning that those quick decisions the racing team is used to making (most of the time it took them just one phone call with the boss) may be a thing of the past, because if RB’s boss isn’t available, then those decisions will likely be made by RB’s board. Together with Porsche that may’ve created just an unnecessary mess.

    I don’t see any attractive options for Porsche at the moment. Williams has been a laughing stock since 2018 and Aston Martin won’t be achieving anything as long as it’s Lance Stroll behind the wheel on one of their cars.
    McLaren already said no to Audi and the rest isn’t an option for obvious reasons. Only if Mercedes decides to sell their team, I can see Porsche entering F1 within the next 10 years.

  9. A little sad. I hope Porsche still finds a way into F1. Will help costs distribution for VW group and will make F1 cheaper for them.

    Interesting decision by Red Bull. They definitely have the upper hand currently with Newey and Max on their payroll. But how sustainable is this upper hand in the medium / long term? Drivers come and go and have a shelf life of maximum 10 years. Superstar engineers can also get it wrong. Newey missed the double diffuser trick in 2009 don’t forget.
    RB’s long term project, RB Powertrains is still in a fairly nascent stage. While they have had success recently, don’t forget that originally RB Powertrains was supposed to manufacture engines for 2023. That plan changed and Honda extended their support from 2023 to 2025. Betting on its success seems to be quite an aggressive bet.

    I feel there is perhaps a better arrangement that is already made with Honda for 2026. That is why Red Bull were comfortable walking away from Porsche altogether. Honda’s 2021 exit is effectively a non-exit, I feel.

  10. I expected this announcement after the Porsche IPO, but i guess they didn’t see the need to wave the F1 flag for the investors to add value

  11. Best outcome. I don’t think having two VW Group entries competing against each other would have been good for either VW Group, or for F1.

    Audi can now focus on being VW Group’s unrivalled “works” team, Red Bull can focus on being a well supported independent with either their own (or works Honda) engines.

    1. I have a feeling it will be Honda. I cannot help but think the reason Porsche got out is that RB’s Honda connection is still strong.

  12. What about Porsche (A) buying Alpha Tauri from Red Bull, and (B) partnering with Andretti* using (C) custom Red Bull Powertrains?

    *(1) Andretti has already joined forces with Porsche in Formula E as a customer team, and (2) Red Bull seems to be really keen to get Herta in an Alpha Tauri next year.

  13. Probably for the better. Better to have a single VW group competitor and put their focus on that.
    I’m sure they can integrate as much as the want in sauber/Alfa Romeo after warming them up with a competitive engine package

  14. They could start their own team. An 11th team Liberty are sooooo aftaid of.

    1. @f1mre Liberty aren’t necessarily afraid of new teams – the teams are, because it will dillute any payments they are automatically due and also risk one of them losing out of cash by ‘not being in the top 10’…

    2. If they’re willing to pay $250million, they can.

  15. I think this puts Redbull in a bit of a situation as they appear currently not to be in a position to design and build their own PU. It seems they have been relying on forming a partnership with an established manufacturer. I’m guessing that RB has been asking for too much ‘input’ into the design and both Honda and Porsche are not interested in sharing their tech with RB. Porsche may buy AlphTauri as the rumour is Mateschitz may wish to sell it. As I said the other day this could put the Andettis back into the picture as well.
    So where will RB turn to get a PU by 2026, they could remain a Honda customer team or use the new Audi PU.

    1. Red Bull are in a position to build their own and a prototype has been on the dyno already. The real question is does RB need Porsche? Porsche seemed to want 50% of the team, taking control and money away from Mateschitz which hasn’t gone down well as the current set up has proved very successful. They have little or no experience in modern F1 tech whereas RB has learnt plenty from the Honda collaboration (which may well continue with a ‘new’ collaboration). Mateschitz doesn’t need the money so selling AT doesn’t make sense especially if they continue using the RB power unit – the value of F1 teams has risen enormously with Liberty and having 2 valuable teams is better for Mateschitz than having one. Porsche don’t have much to offer other than the name – they haven’t built an F1 engine for 30 years – they could try a tie up with Andretti, although the big noises in F1 seem unimpressed by Andretti, which leaves Porsche all at sea, even more so now Domenicali has hinted that other manufacturers are still interested if Porsche fail to acquire half of RBR.

      1. @mrfill @sjaakfoo It would be good if a link giving some information about the engine test could be supplied. I have had a look but only stories saying

        Christian Horner has revealed Red Bull’s first in-house manufactured power unit will be tested before the end of the year.


  16. Awesome, that means we’ll have six engine manufacturers in 2026, so by default six “works” teams in the sport.

    And there’s people that actually say stuff like “Liberty is destroying the sport” without blinking. Sport’s healthier than it’s been in decades.

    1. Financially that may have benefits for the people involved, but it won’t matter for us the audience if these manufacturers are as uncompetitive as Alpine and Mercedes are this season.

      1. Honda was uncompetitive to the point of being a laughing stock for years and yet they’re the only ones that ultimately beat Mercedes dominance. So, even if they are “uncompetitive” now, that doesn’t mean they’ll be that in seasons to come.

  17. Well Porsche will not enter F1 WITH RB but not saying will not join F1 at all.

  18. I guess they’ve got the LMDH programme to focus on, Porsche for me have always been more of a sportscar racing brand than F1, though they do have a history of success in F1.

    1. That will mostly be a case of running the team, as the LMDh cars will consist mostly of spec parts. It won’t cost anywhere near as much time and money as their LMP1 program. I suppose that was the point of these regulations to begin with.

  19. I don’ think RBR were interested in Porsche taking a stake in the team or anything like this. It sounds like this is what Porsche were hoping for or expecting. I am also not sure RBR really need Porsche. They are doing pretty well at the moment with the Honda support and them building the engines themselves. I think, they might have decided this arrangement can develop and continue beyond 2026. So why change things.

    1. @phil-f1-21 RBR aren’t building the engines themselves. Honda are doing all the work still. RBPT won’t be running anything in-house in anger until 2026, assuming it’s not mothballed by then…

      1. OK. I think I knew that really so I’m not sure why I wrote something different ;-).
        Thanks for the clarification.

  20. I totally understand why Red Bull doesn’t want change just for the sake of change. They’ve experienced being totally dependent on an engine manufacturer and then when that company decides to pull the plug they’re up the creek without a paddle.

    I think their new model with the Powertrains being built at the same factory as the car is the right one. They can carry on regardless. If a car company wants to come in and be a part of it they can, that company can put some of their technical people into the mix and work with them but it’s on our terms. They can put their badge on the car as well. With Newey’s new RB17 Hypercar that was evidently just a placeholder name with a view to being rebranded as the Porsche Red Bull 999 Hypercar.

    If they’re not going to team up with Porsche, Honda would make sense as they’ve already proven to work together well and successfully. Even now that Honda have officially pulled out it’s arguably the best performing engine in F1 at this moment with performance and reliability.

  21. Good riddance.

    Who needs an engine manufacturer without an engine?

  22. could Porsche enter as a manufacturer? both for car and engine?

  23. Porsche didn’t want to build an engine though, did they? They wanted to slap their name on an already existing and powerful engine and buy 50% of the team and reap the benefits of controlling that. Why would Red Bull agree to that? Historically it hasn’t ended well for F1 teams to sell off large chunks of their operation to wealthy manufacturers only for them to pull out and gut the team.

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