Site logo

Ford not ruling out returning as a manufacturer

NEWS STORY
02/02/2023

Amidst claims the Blue Oval could appear on the engine in the back of the Red Bull this season, Ford could yet return to F1 as a manufacturer.

For some weeks now there has been speculation that the famous Ford logo might appear on the engines in the cars of Max Verstappen and Sergio Perez, somewhat ironic as the power units are the work of Honda.

However, while we wait to see if the rumours prove true, the American giant is not ruling out returning to F1 as a manufacturer in its own right.

Until the 2004 French Grand Prix, the Blue Oval was the most successful engine manufacturer in the history of F1, even though the Cosworth engine that powered drivers to 12 titles and constructors to 10 - winning 176 Grands Prix along the way - was essentially an all-British affair, with Mike Costin and Keith Duckworth basically given 100,000 by Ford and told to get on with it.

In the mid-80s, when it became clear that the naturally-aspirated Cosworth was no match for the turbocharged cars, the Cosworth era essentially came to an end. However, with the banning of turbos in 1989, the latest version of the Cosworth was used by a number of teams.

In 2000, the Blue Oval joined the F1 grid for the first time as an entrant, having bought the Stewart team and renamed it Jaguar. A few years down the line however, Ford began to tighten the purse strings, Henry Ford famously questioning the fact that a certain Edmund Irvine was the highest paid employee on the entire company's payroll, and in late 2004 sold the entire outfit to Red Bull.

Feeling that despite its spending, Jaguar did nothing for the Ford brand - and precious little for Jaguar - Ford subsequently withdrew from F1 completely, opting to focus on WRC.

In 2010, a new Cosworth was part of the carrot aimed at enticing new teams to the sport as Max Mosley continued his bid to introduce a budget, however, with the FIA president failing to get his way and the spending war continuing the three new teams - Hispania, Lotus and Virgin - ultimately exited stage left as did Cosworth.

While Honda continues to provide assistance to Red Bull Powertrains it is understood that there is nothing preventing Red Bull rebadging the power units, indeed with back-to-back titles it could be a lucrative deal for the Austrian team, and in recent months Ford has been linked with such a deal.

In a further twist, Honda, which had previously announced its departure from F1, other than to provide IP and assistance to Red Bull until 2025, has registered its entry for the (yet to be confirmed) 2026 engine regulations, though it is unclear whether this would be in partnership with an existing team, doing an Audi and buying into an existing team or re-entering the sport in its own right.

Meanwhile, to add further spice, Mark Rushbrook, the Global Director of Ford Performance, has admitted that the American giant is pondering a return to the grid.

"Formula 1 is certainly strong and growing, both in the United States and globally," he said, according to Motorsport.com. "What they have done well is create great racing and great competition.

"It's still the pinnacle, but they've been able to reach new audiences with things like Drive to Survive," he added.

"As a company we go racing for innovation, tech transfer, the learning opportunity, but also for marketing reasons as well," he continued. "It's shifted for sure, and it definitely requires consideration."

Asked if this meant a possible entry in 2026, he said: "We don't comment on speculation, but it's the same with all these series that are out there. It's our responsibility to study them and understand them, and then make decisions on whether it makes sense or doesn't make sense."

LATEST NEWS

more news >

RELATED ARTICLES

LATEST IMAGES

galleries >

  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images

POST A COMMENT

or Register for a Pitpass ID to have your say

Please note that all posts are reactively moderated and must adhere to the site's posting rules and etiquette.

Post your comment

READERS COMMENTS

 

1. Posted by rtw1951, 31/01/2023 12:43

"So, Cadillac is a rebranding exercise and Ford just gets to slap it's name on a Honda. Hypocrites."

Rating: Positive (2)     Rate comment: Positive | NegativeReport this comment

2. Posted by jcr, 31/01/2023 11:38

"Every manufacturer in the world will be taking note of the treatment metered out to GM/CADILLAC/ANDRETTI and getting a good view of what F1 thinks it is on the global stage.
"

Rating: Positive (8)     Rate comment: Positive | NegativeReport this comment

Share this page

X

Copyright © Pitpass 2002 - 2023. All rights reserved.

about us  |  advertise  |  contact  |  privacy & security  |  rss  |  terms