February 21, 2023 Volume 19 Issue 07

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Ford returning to Formula 1: Will work to develop next-gen hybrid power unit

Red Bull Powertrains and Ford will partner on the development of the next-gen hybrid power unit that will supply engines to both Oracle Red Bull Racing and Scuderia AlphaTauri Formula 1 teams from 2026 to at least 2030. Fans got a first look at the new 2023 RB19 Oracle Red Bull Racing F1 car at the team's official launch in New York City on Feb. 3. [Credit: FIA/Getty Images/Red Bull Content Pool]





Ford Motor Company is returning to Formula 1 racing after more than two decades away from the sport. Ford has entered into a long-term strategic technical partnership with Red Bull Powertrains to develop a next-gen hybrid power unit to be used from the 2026 Formula 1 season onward.

Ford entered Formula 1 for the first time in 1967 and garnered 13 Drivers' Championships throughout its history. 2004 was the last season Ford participated in Formula 1 (it sold the team to Red Bull Racing). The company is the third most successful engine manufacturer in F1 history behind Mercedes and Ferrari .

Starting from 2023, Ford and Red Bull Powertrains will work to develop the power unit that will be part of the new technical regulations, including a 350-kW electric motor and a new combustion engine able to accept fully sustainable fuels, ready for the 2026 season.

Red Bull Ford will provide the power units for both the Oracle Red Bull Racing and Scuderia AlphaTauri teams from 2026 to at least 2030.

"This is the start of a thrilling new chapter in Ford's motorsports story that began when my great-grandfather won a race that helped launch our company," said Bill Ford, Ford's executive chair. "Ford, alongside world champions Oracle Red Bull Racing, is returning to the pinnacle of the sport, bringing Ford's long tradition of innovation, sustainability, and electrification to one of the world's most visible stages."

Ford will provide technical expertise "in all areas where it can add value to the front-running World Championship team." Areas to be explored together are in the combustion engine development and key developments like battery cell and electric motor technology, power unit control software, and analytics.

In 2026, Ford will be the only manufacturer to be competing in racing disciplines from grassroots motorsports to Formula 1 comprising WEC and IMSA, including Le Mans 24 Hours with Mustang GT3; WRC with the M-Sport Ford Puma Hybrid Rally1; Baja 1000 with Ranger Raptor and Bronco; and NASCAR, NHRA, and Supercars with Mustang. Ford says it will continue to leverage its racing efforts to speed innovations, latest technologies, and software to consumers and will continue to do so through this new partnership at the pinnacle of Motorsports for future Ford electric vehicles.

VIDEO: In 2026, Ford will be the only manufacturer to be competing in racing disciplines from grassroots motorsports to Formula 1.

On the consumer side, Ford, the No. 2 U.S. EV automaker, is investing $50 billion in a bid to lead the EV revolution around the world. In the U.S., the company has been driven by the success of its F-150 Lightning and Mustang Mach-E. It is the market leader in many segments around the world with its E-Transit all-electric van. Ford says it is working to meet increased consumer demand and deliver an annual run rate of 600,000 electric vehicles globally by the end of this year and 2 million globally by the end of 2026 as part of its Ford+ plan.

"Ford's return to Formula 1 with Red Bull Racing is all about where we are going as a company -- increasingly electric, software-defined, modern vehicles and experiences," said Jim Farley, president and CEO, Ford. "F1 will be an incredibly cost-effective platform to innovate, share ideas and technologies, and engage with tens of millions of new customers."

Source: Ford Motor Company

Published February 2023

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