Honda will build engines for Aston Martin’s F1 team from 2026 | Top Gear
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Wednesday 4th October
Formula One

Honda will build engines for Aston Martin’s F1 team from 2026

Japanese company completes yet another u-turn, decides F1 is the future after all

Published: 24 May 2023

Honda will become Aston Martin’s engine supplier in F1 from 2026, when fresh regulations will demand that more than double the amount of hybrid power and engines run on a fully sustainable fuel.

The move means Honda has now come full circle from its decision to leave the sport altogether at the end of 2021: it powered Max Verstappen to his first driver’s title just as it was headed for the exit, and missed out altogether last season as Red Bull stormed to both championships using (unbadged) Honda tech. Oops.

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The Honda stickers are back on the 2023 Red Bull of course, but that’ll only be temporary with the team agreeing a technical partnership with Ford for 2026, when the V6 hybrid formula gets its shake-up.

So Honda - now convinced that F1 can help it towards carbon neutrality after all - has turned to Aston Martin to secure its position as an engine manufacturer for the foreseeable future.

“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,” explained Toshihiro Mibe, Honda’s Global CEO.

“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.”

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Just us, or did he basically say we can expect an electric, flying Civic Type R in the future?

Anyway, Aston’s executive chairman Lawrence Stroll had this to add: “I would like to welcome Honda and Honda Racing Corporation (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.”

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The move is clearly very good news for F1, but we have questions. Chiefly… what happens if Fernando Alonso - he of Honda-crushing team radio criticism of those painful McLaren days - is still going at Aston in 2026? Could get tasty…

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