Audi Reveals It’s Joining The Formula 1 Grid In 2026

Vorsprung durch Takeover.

Just when you thought the Formula 1 silly season couldn’t get any sillier, German performance car giant Audi has finally confirmed that they’ll be joining the F1 grid in 2026.


This comes off the back of news that fellow Volkswagen Group brand Porsche will also be joining F1, having revealed plans to take a 50% stake in Red Bull earlier in July.

Unlike the Porsche/Red Bull deal, where Red Bull Racing will maintain overall control of the team and Porsche will be more of a powertrain and technical partner, Audi will instead take over the Sauber team entirely, and produce their own powertrain in Germany.

Sauber currently competes in F1 under the Alfa Romeo brand, but it’s just that – a branding exercise. The Audi deal will be a complete factory team situation, like how the Sauber-BMW partnership worked between 2006 and 2009.

Audi had originally negotiated with McLaren about a takeover of team shares, but it seems as if those discussions fell through a while ago.

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This also comes after Sauber’s owner Finn Rausing rejected an offer from American outfit Andretti Autosport – one of IndyCar’s most successful teams – to sell the team for €350 million at the end of 2021, motorsport.com reports.

Audi (and Porsche) joining F1 has been on the cards for a while, but it’s really only been in the last six months that we’ve seen anything concrete shape up. In 2026, there will be a new set of technical regulations – including notably different powertrain regulations – which were largely shaped around enticing car manufacturers like Audi to join the sport. Looks like F1’s plans have paid off, then.

More to come.

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