The return of Ford in Formula 1 has every fan excited, especially after Audi announced its comeback to the sport. Both will be present starting with the 2026 season, with Ford partnering with top team Red Bull Racing, and its sister team AlphaTauri.
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Ford in Formula 1: a rich history and performances
As the sport is heading increasingly in an electrified direction, the return of Ford, after a two decade-hiatus, and a proud history of success in the late 1960s and 1970s, is set to make a significant impact in the FIA Formula One World Championship once again.
Bill Ford, executive chairman, said: “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. Ford 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.”
In important regions across the globe, including the United States, Formula 1’s popularity is still expanding. According to the company, one of the main factors driving Ford’s decision to rejoin Formula 1 is the FIA and F1’s dedication to sustainability, which is shown by the greater usage of electric power and sustainable fuels.
Return to a new era and an electrified future
With 10 Constructors’ titles and 13 Drivers’ championships, Ford is still the third-most successful engine manufacturer in F1 history despite quitting the competition in 2004.
Stefano Domenicali, President, and CEO of Formula 1, declared: “The news today that Ford is coming to Formula 1 from 2026 is great for the sport and we are excited to see them join the incredible automotive partners already in Formula 1. Ford is a global brand with an incredible heritage in racing and the automotive world and they see the huge value that our platform provides with over half a billion fans around the world.
He added: Our commitment to be Net Zero Carbon by 2030 and to introduce sustainable fuels in the F1 cars from 2026 is also an important reason for their decision to enter F1. We believe that our sport provides the opportunity and reach unlike any other and we cannot wait for the Ford logo to be racing round F1’s iconic circuits from 2026.”
FIA President Mohammed Ben Sulayem commented: “There are few manufacturers who have such a celebrated motor sport history as Ford, so to see them coming back to the FIA Formula One World Championship is excellent news. It further underlines the success of the 2026 Power Unit Regulations that have at their heart a commitment to both sustainability and spectacle, and of course having more interest from the United States is important for the continued growth of the world’s top motor sport category.”
Red Bull and Ford, partners from 2026
Red Bull Powertrains and Ford are embarking on a new technical alliance, as Red Bull Team Principal Christian Horner sheds light on the decision to part ways with long-time partner Honda. The partnership, set to commence in 2026, will focus on the development of a cutting-edge power unit to be utilized by both Red Bull Racing and AlphaTauri.
Though Red Bull and Honda’s partnership brought great success to the team, including two drivers’ championships and a constructors’ title, their time together will close in 2025. Despite the impending separation, Horner expressed high regard for Honda, referring to the company as “incredible.”
“We’ve had an incredible partnership with Honda and when they initially announced their withdrawal from Formula 1 in 2020, it was with great sadness and that’s what prompted the creation of Red Bull Powertrains, to take control for our own future,” said Christian Horner.
He added: “Now with an OEM partner like Ford our paths are different for the 2026 season. We wish Honda the very best of luck for 2026 as their plans look to crystalise. But between now and then we will be working very closely and looking to build on the success that we have achieved so far.”
As Ford revealed their comeback to the world of motorsports after a hiatus of nearly two decades from Formula 1 racing, Horner shed light on how this new alliance would be beneficial for his Red Bull outfit.
“This is a purely commercial and technical deal, so there is no exchange of any shares or participation within the business,” Horner revealed. “It’s a very straightforward agreement where we will have the ability to share and have access to R&D, particularly on the EV side and self-technology, software development and so on. And then on the commercial side with Ford being so prevalent in the US, as a commercial partner it enables us to help achieve even more penetration in that market.”