Honda will retain a loose connection to Formula 1 through the end of 2025 after extending its technical support program with Red Bull.
Honda announced in October 2020 that it would officially leave Formula 1 after 2021, but eventually reached an agreement that Red Bull and sister team AlphaTauri could continue to use its power units.
Red Bull formed Red Bull Powertrains for 2022, and a deal was struck whereby Honda Racing Corporation would provide technical support for this and next year. While official Honda branding does not feature on the RB18, the HRC logos are present on the engine cover and driver overalls. (In the photo above, Honda badging was evident on the Red Bull car that won the 2021 F1 Grand Prix of Monaco.)
Red Bull Powertrains had expected to take full control for 2024 in the preparation of the power units, but an extended agreement has been reached for HRC to continue supporting RBPT through the remainder of the current regulatory cycle, which runs until the end of 2025.
In a statement issued Tuesday, Honda reiterated that its official exit after 2021 enabled “the resources allocated to PU development to be diverted to meet the company’s future carbon-neutral goals. The ongoing agreement between the two parties does not involve PU development, therefore HRC will be able to provide this service from within its current resources.”
HRC President Koji Watanabe said his organization will continue supporting Red Bull Powertrains in Formula 1 “following Red Bull’s request to extend our current agreement, which HRC can meet within its existing resources. Once again, we aim to use our involvement in the pinnacle of motorsport for the development of technologies and of our workforce.”
Red Bull has enjoyed a strong opening half to the 2022 season, claiming nine victories from 13 grands prix, and holds a commanding 97-point advantage over Ferrari as it chases its first Constructors’ crown since 2013.
Red Bull is widely expected to partner with Porsche for the next cycle of engine regulations from 2026.