German automotive manufacturer, Audi, has announced that it will join the Formula 1 World Championship from the 2026 season as a power unit supplier.
Its partnership with the sport comes in light of new power unit regulations which were published last month and were designed to attract newcomers to join at a competitive level.
Power units in 2026 will continue to run the current V6 internal combustion engine architecture but will feature more electrical power and 100% sustainable fuels – which were two things that caught the attention of Audi.
The manufacturer also said it supports Formula 1’s plans to be more sustainable and cost-efficient – referencing the cost cap for power unit manufacturers introduced for 2023.
“I am delighted to welcome Audi to Formula 1, an iconic automotive brand, pioneer, and technological innovator,” said F1 President and CEO Stefano Domenicali. “This is a major moment for our sport that highlights the huge strength we have as a global platform that continues to grow.
“It is also a big recognition that our move to sustainably fuelled hybrid engines in 2026 is a future solution for the automotive sector. We are all looking forward to seeing the Audi logo on the grid and will be hearing further details from them on their plans in due course.”
Speaking at a press conference at Spa, the manufacturer said it will announce a decision on which team they will be “lining up within 2026 by the end of this year”.
The new power untis will be developed at the Audi Sports facility in Neuburg, marking the first time in more than a decade that an F1 powertrain will be made in Germany.
“Motorsport is an integral part of Audi’s DNA,” said Duesmann. “Formula 1 is both a global stage for our brand and a highly challenging development laboratory. The combination of high performance and competition is always a driver of innovation and technology transfer in our industry. With the new rules, now is the right time for us to get involved. After all, Formula 1 and Audi both pursue clear sustainability goals.”
Hoffmann added: “In view of the major technological leaps that the series is making towards sustainability in 2026, we can speak of a new Formula 1. Formula 1 is transforming, and Audi wants to actively support this journey. A close link between our Formula 1 project and AUDI AG’s Technical Development department will enable synergies.”
They then confirmed that Adam Baker, who has held numerous senior positions for different manufacturers and teams within the world of motorsport -as well as spending three years at the FIA – will run the Formula 1 project as CEO.