TOKYO, May 24, 2023 - (JCN Newswire) - Honda Motor Co., Ltd. today announced plans to participate in the FIA(1) Formula One World Championship (F1) from the 2026 season as a power unit supplier. Honda has agreed to enter into a works partnership with the Aston Martin Aramco Cognizant Formula One Team to supply power units compliant with the new F1 power unit regulations which will take effect in the 2026 season.
In pursuit of its goal of achieving carbon neutrality by 2030, starting from the 2026 season, F1 will implement new regulations with an engine/electric motor maximum power output ratio of 50/50. This will represent a significant increase in the deployment of electrical power compared to the current ratio(2), while use of a 100% sustainable fuel is also required.
Specifically, the 2026 regulations require a reduction of engine output while tripling the output of the energy recovery system (ERS), which recovers kinetic energy under certain situations such as braking, and converts it into electrical energy. This will result in maximum power output that is roughly even between the engine and motor.
These changes in F1 power unit regulations are consistent with the direction Honda has been taking toward the realization of carbon neutrality. Working to these regulations will have profound significance in terms of providing Honda important opportunities to pursue the development of future technologies toward that direction. Based on this belief, Honda made the decision to take on a new challenge in F1 racing.
The Honda Racing Corporation (HRC), which has become responsible for both auto and motorcycle motorsports activities since 2022, will assume responsibility for the development of power units, race participation and the management for F1 racing as well.
Comment of Toshihiro Mibe, Global CEO of Honda
"One of the key reasons for our decision to take up the new challenge in F1 is that the world's pinnacle form of racing is striving to become a sustainable racing series, which is in line with the direction Honda is aiming toward carbon neutrality, and it will become a platform which will facilitate the development of our electrification technologies.
Honda is a company that has a history of growing by taking on challenges and winning world-class races. With the new 2026 regulations, the key for winning will be a compact, lightweight, and high-power electric motor with a high-performance battery capable of handling high and swift power output, as well as the energy management technology. We believe that the technologies and know-how gained from this new challenge can potentially be applied directly to our future mass production electric vehicles, such as an electric flagship sports model, and electrification technologies in various areas, including eVTOL which is currently under research and development.
Honda and our new partner, the Aston Martin F1 Team, share the same sincere attitude and determination to win, so starting with the 2026 season, we will work together and strive for the Championship title as Aston Martin Aramco Honda.
Honda has the utmost respect for the FIA, which made a bold decision to introduce these new and challenging regulations to ensure the sustainability of both racing activities and the global environment, and for the Formula One Group(3), which has been enhancing the brand value of F1 and ensuring F1's evolvement as the most prestigious automobile racing in the world."
Comment of Lawrence Stroll, Executive Chairman of Aston Martin Aramco Cognizant Formula One Team
"I would like to welcome Honda and HRC to the Aston Martin Aramco Cognizant Formula One Team. We share a mutual drive, determination, and relentless ambition to succeed on track. Honda is a global titan and its success in motorsport is longstanding and incredibly impressive. I would like to thank Mr. Mibe and Mr. Watanabe, and the whole team at HRC as we embark on this exciting future together from 2026."
Comment of Koji Watanabe, President of Honda Racing Corporation
"In the midst of major changes in our business and the motorsports environment leading toward the transition to a carbon neutral society, we have re-established HRC as an optimal platform to sustain and further evolve motorsport activities as a Honda strength. We will establish sustainable operational structures for our racing activities and continue to deliver more dreams and excitement for motorsports fans all around the world."
Comment of Martin Whitmarsh, Group CEO of Aston Martin Performance Technologies
"I have been fortunate in my career to work with Honda over the years and I am thrilled to have the opportunity to partner with HRC and the Aston Martin Aramco Cognizant Formula One Team from 2026. The new 2026 F1 power unit regulations are a huge and important change but one which we are confident we can navigate successfully together. Jointly with our strategic partner Aramco, we can look forward to open collaboration towards a common goal. Our future works partnership with Honda is one of the last parts of the jigsaw puzzle slotting into place for Aston Martin's ambitious plans in Formula One. Finally, I would like to pay tribute to our current power unit supplier who we will continue to partner with for the next few seasons."
(1) Federation Internationale de l'Automobile
(2) Under the current 2023 regulations, the required ratio of electric motor contribution to power output is slightly less than 20%.
(3) The Formula One Group is an organization consisting of multiple companies responsible for the entire commercial field of F1 racing, including Formula One Administration (FOA) responsible for exercising of F1's commercial rights and Formula One Management (FOM) responsible for promotional and marketing activities for F1.
Honda's Participation in F1 Racing
1964 - 1968
Participated as an "all Honda" team responsible for both the engine and chassis, marking Honda's first victory at the Mexican Grand Prix in 1965
1983 - 1992
Participated as an engine supplier
1986: Won the Constructors' Championship title as Williams Honda
1987: Won both Drivers' and Constructors' Championship titles
1988-1991: Won both Drivers' and Constructors' Championship titles for four consecutive years as McLaren Honda
2000 - 2005
Participated as an engine supplier and joint developer of the chassis for BAR Honda
2006 - 2008
Participated as an "all Honda" team responsible for both engine and chassis
2015 - 2017
Participated as a power unit supplier. Supplied the power unit to McLaren team
Started supplying power units to Toro Rosso (currently, Scuderia Alpha Tauri)
Started supplying power units to Red Bull Racing
Max Verstappen won the Drivers' Championship title for Red Bull Racing Honda Honda Concluded F1 participation
HRC began providing technical support to Red Bull Powertrains Red Bull Racing and Max Verstappen won both the Drivers' and Constructors' Championship titles
About Aston Martin Aramco Cognizant Formula One Team
Silverstone, Northamptonshire, United Kingdom
First F1 race:
The legendary Aston Martin marque first raced in Formula One in 1959 and returned to the sport in 2021 under the leadership of Canadian entrepreneur Lawrence Stroll. With a team of passionate people at its heart, and a talented squad of drivers - including double World Champion Fernando Alonso and Canada's Lance Stroll - this is a team with both a rich heritage and a fresh perspective. Alongside collaborative and strategic partners, the Silverstone-based team is bringing new energy to the sport with a determination to shake up the order and compete at the sharp end.
For more information, visit www.astonmartinf1.com.
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