Audi Enter Formula One
Audi is tackling its most challenging ambition to date: combining sustainability, innovation, and maximum performance in motorsports. Audi’s decision hinged on the new regulations introduced by the Fédération Internationale de l'Automobile (FIA). Among other things, the FIA requires using sustainable synthetic fuels from 2026 and increasing the power unit’s electric share by up to 50 percent. Audi intends to actively drive the transformation of what is by far the world’s most important motorsports series. The power unit will be developed at the Neuburg an der Donau site. In the future, the Formula 1 program will spearhead the factory’s motorsports activities.
Audi announced its entry at a press conference at the Formula 1 Belgian Grand Prix at SpaFrancorchamps. At the event, Markus Duesmann, Chairman of the Board of Management of AUDI AG, and Oliver Hoffmann, Member of the Board of Management for Technical Development, answered questions in the company of Formula 1 President and CEO Stefano Domenicali and Mohammed ben Sulayem, President of the International Automobile Federation
“Motorsport is an integral part of Audi’s DNA,” says Markus 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.”
The key to getting involved is the world’s most popular racing series is the clear plan to become more sustainable and cost-efficient. The new technical rules, which will apply from 2026, focus on greater electrification and advanced sustainable fuel. In addition to the existing cap on costs for teams, a cost cap for power unit manufacturers will be introduced in 2023. In addition, Formula 1 has set itself the ambitious goal of being a carbon-neutral racing series by 2030.
Globally recognized, highly emotional, and technologically advanced – that’s how Formula 1 has met Audi’s exact requirements. The series holds races in all relevant markets of the brand. As a spectacular platform for the most demanding electrified racing cars in the world, it is of particular interest to car manufacturers. Audi is taking on the challenge of proving its “Vorsprung durch Technik” in this competitive environment.
The great interest in Formula 1 is global and the racing series is one of the sporting events with the highest reach in the world. In 2021, more than 1.5 billion TV viewers watched the races. Formula 1 is popular in key markets such as China and the USA, and the trend continues to rise – even among young target groups. On social media, Formula 1 is now experiencing the highest growth rates among the world’s most popular sports.
Actively Shaping Formula 1’s Transformation Oliver Hoffmann, Member of the Board for Technical Development, says:
“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.”