Ford returns to Formula 1
After more than two decades, Ford is returning to Formula 1. The iconic American automaker and Red Bull Powertrains are entering into a long term strategic technical partnership for the development of the next-gen hybrid power unit to be used from the 2026 Formula 1 season onwards.
Red Bull Ford Powertrains, 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, 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.”
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 350kW electric motor and a new combustion engine able to accept fully sustainable fuels, ready for the 2026 season.
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 Motor Company. “F1 will be an incredibly cost-effective platform to innovate, share ideas and technologies, and engage with tens of millions of new customers.”
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.
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“It’s fantastic to be welcoming Ford back into Formula 1 through this partnership,” said Christian Horner, Oracle Red Bull Racing Team Principal and CEO. “As an independent engine manufacturer to have the ability to benefit from an OEM’s experience like Ford puts us in good stead against the competition. They are a manufacturer rich in motoring history that spans generations. From Jim Clark to Ayrton Senna and Michael Schumacher, the lineage speaks for itself. For us as Red Bull Powertrains to open the next chapter of that dynasty, as Red Bull Ford, is tremendously exciting. 2026 is still a while away but for us the work already starts as we look to a new future and a continued evolution of Oracle Red Bull Racing.”
Ford is investing $50 billion to lead the EV revolution around the world. It is the number 2 EV company in the U.S. driven by the success of the F-150 Lightning and Mustang Mach-E as well as the market leader in many markets around the world with the E-Transit. Ford 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.
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 continues 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.
“We are entering an exciting new age for Ford Performance,” said Farley. “We will be competing to win in F1, the pinnacle for motorsport, with Red Bull Racing. You will see the world’s most popular sports coupe, the Mustang, race from the grassroots to Australian Supercars to NASCAR to Le Mans. And will build our off-road leadership in the World Rally Championship, King of Hammers and to the Baha 1000, and more. All the while, we’ll continue to excite the world with cool demonstrators like SuperVan 4 and Mustang Mach-E 1400.”