F1

Audi and Porsche set to make 2026 debut

Following news of F1's planned engine changes from the 2026 season, German car manufacturer Volkswagen has announced that two of its car brands, Audi and Porsche, would be joining the F1 grid.

Audi and Porsche could feature on F1 tracks as soon as 2026

A Volkswagen spokesperson confirmed that the brand would not be acquiring or floating a brand new one either, as both Audi and Porsche are likely to have different commitments in the sport.

Volkswagen CEO Herbert Diess revealed that the decision to join the franchise was a no brainer as both brands are recognizable, and the move would generate more money than it would cost them.

"Porsche has to be the sportiest car brand in the world so it has to do motorsport, and you conclude that if Porsche does motorsport, the most efficient thing is to do Formula 1. You almost have to put a checkmark on that." Deiss said.

"Audi is a much weaker brand than Porsche because it can't demand such a high price premium. Audi has the better case for Formula 1 because it has much greater potential for the brand.

"Audi also transfers four or five billion(Euros) a year to Wolfsburg [VolksWagen HQ], and it will also transfer more with Formula 1 than without it." The Volkswagen CEO said.

Deiss also made it clear that the proposed 2026 engine change was a major factor in the decision as it created a window of opportunity for the German manufacturers.

"You can't catch up on that when you join a new team, you need five or 10 years to be among the front runners. In other words, you can only get on board if you have a major rule change.

"It will come in the direction of 2026, when the engines will be electrified to a much greater extent, including with synthetic fuels

"That means you can decide now to do Formula 1 - or then probably not again for 10 years. And our two premium brands think that's the right thing to do, and are prioritising it." Deiss said.

Porsche would be returning to F1 after a 35-year hiatus, and they are likely to team up with long time partners Red Bull Racing. The paid have worked in other racing franchises like the world rally championship.

As for Audi, there are only speculations about who they could team up with. A few weeks ago, rumours emerged that they had made an astonishing $718 million bid to own a stake in McLaren's F1 team.

McLaren came out to deny these reports, but many now expect the German manufacturers to partner with either Aston Martin or Williams Racing.

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