Honda is considering sponsoring the Red Bull F1 team in 2022 and could even return to the sport a couple of years later.
Honda is in its last year in F1 as an engine manufacturer, but the good news is that it has a shot at leaving with a bang as Red Bull has been on fire this season and remains the odds on favourite to win the world title despite some setbacks in the last couple of races which has handed back the advantage to Lewis Hamilton and Mercedes. But even if that were to not happen, with the Honda engine IP being the foundation of Red Bull powertrains, next year as F1 begins its new era, there is a high possibility that the Honda logo will remain on the Red Bull cars.
The relationship between Red Bull and Honda has been a very close one and it is even helping Red Bull adapt and further develop its engine for the 2022 season which adds a 10 per cent ethanol mix for cleaner fuel.
“We will do everything we can to make sure Red Bull is ready to race with their own engine. We will no longer be an engine supplier, so our logo will not be seen everywhere. Maybe as a sponsor, but no decision has been made on that yet,” said Honda chief Masaya Nagai.
“To what extent we will support them in the transition period has not yet been determined in detail,” he added.
Nagai even said that with new engine regulations potentially coming in 2025, where there is chatter for an all-new powertrain that will have more electrical elements and more a more carbon-neutral internal combustion engine which runs on biofuel, Honda may be back in the sport.
“The power source is going to change, and the way of racing could also change because of the CO2-neutral development. If that suits us, we may consider rejoining at that time, but at the moment there is no question of that,” he added.