Audi to join Formula 1 in 2026

Audi F1

German manufacturer Audi will join the Formula 1 World Championship from the 2026 season as a power unit supplier.

It comes after new power unit regulations, designed specifically to make it possible and attractive for newcomers to join the sport at a competitive level, were published earlier this month.

The 2026 power units will maintain the current V6 internal combustion engine architecture but feature increased electrical power and 100% sustainable fuels, two factors Audi say were key to it joining.

Audi CEO Markus Duesmann said, "Racing, motorsport, is in the DNA of Audi. Audi has always been active and been successful in motor racing. If you think about Le Mans, Dakar, DTM, Formula E, we have always been very active and very successful and we want to continue this success story now in Formula 1,".

“I think it’s perfect timing due to the new rules that are established now, for us to enter F1. And there are many aspects of F1. We have decided to become a full electric car manufacturer and F1 changed the rules in a way that we can enter with a high electric part of the powertrain, with renewable fuels, and Formula 1 have installed a cost cap that makes it very attractive for us to enter now.”

Oliver Hoffmann, Audi's Member of the Board of Management for Technical Development, said it wouldn’t be “realistic” to expect Audi’s powertrains to win instantly – but maintained that the storied manufacturer was already embracing the challenge of competing with Ferrari, Mercedes, Red Bull and Renault’s power units.

As a result of Audi’s massive announcement, Formula 1 will have at least five engine manufacturers from 2026, when a new era of sustainable, world-leading power units will be unveiled. F1 President and CEO Stefano Domenicali explained why Friday marked an “incredible moment” for the championship.

 

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