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Thursday, October 27, 2022

Audi To Enter F1 With Sauber


After announcing the end of its partnership with Alfa Romeo by the end of 2023, the Sauber F1 team will now serve as Audi’s factory team from 2026 onwards using a power unit developed by the German automaker. The move will have Audi also acquiring a stake in the Swiss team.

Following the announcement of its Formula 1 entry at the end of August, Audi’s confirmation of its strategic partner marks the next milestone in the company’s entry into the premier class of motorsport. With around 30 years of competitive experience, Sauber is one of the most renowned and traditional teams in Formula 1. While the power unit will be created at Audi’s Motorsport Competence Center in Neuburg an der Donau, Sauber will develop and manufacture the race car at its site in Hinwil (Switzerland). Sauber will also be responsible for planning and executing the race operations.

Development of the power unit, which consists of an electric motor, battery, control systems, and a combustion engine, is already in full swing at the facility of the specially founded Audi Formula Racing GmbH in Neuburg an der Donau. More than 120 employees are already working on the project.

The timetable up to the first race with Audi participation in the 2026 season is ambitious: The expansion of the Neuburg facility in terms of personnel, buildings and technical infrastructure should be largely in place in 2023. The first tests with the power unit developed for the 2026 regulations in a Formula 1 test car are planned for 2025.

Formula 1 is taking a big step towards sustainability with the new regulations that will come into effect from 2026. This was an important prerequisite for Audi to decide to enter the championship. The power units will be more efficient than they are today, as the proportion of electric power will increase significantly. The electric drivetrain will then have nearly as much power as the internal combustion engine, which comes to around 544 horsepower. The highly efficient 1.6-liter turbocharged engines will be powered by sustainable synthetic fuel that is carbon neutral. Formula 1 has also set itself the goal of being carbon neutral as a racing series by 2030.

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