Porsche eyeing return to F1posted in F105 | 09 | 2017

    PORSCHE IS UNDERSTOOD to be eyeing up a return to Formula 1 as an engine supplier. Reports today state the German sportscar giant had meetings with F1 bosses at the Italian Grand Prix. (Related: New £5m Porsche Centre for Scotland)

    Porsche has already confirmed it will quit the World Endurance Championship and Le Mans 24-Hours, and will contest the 2019/20 Formula E Championship with a works team.

    The car builder has also already confirmed it has a new high-efficiency concept engine — which could power an F1 car — under development.

    Significantly, Michael Steiner, Porsche’s research and development chief, has already confirmed the company’s entire Le Mans team is being kept together. This has fuelled speculation that Porsche could enter F1 under the proposed 2021 regulations.

    Related: Mercedes and Hamilton dominate at Monza

    “We need all of these (LMP1) people in the future,” Steiner said. “The great team we built for LMP1 is highly motivated and represents an enormous wealth of knowledge. So it is a good idea to have a concrete plan for the engineers, mechanics and even for the drivers.

    “Like other manufacturers we, at the invitation of the FIA, are participating in the discussions about the future formula one powertrain.

    “The team at Weissach is not working on an F1 engine at the moment, but it is working on a high-efficiency engine at the concept level — without a decision about what we are doing with this engine.”

    F1’s governing body, the FIA, has already agreed that from 2021 the sport will use cheaper and louder engines; this is expected to be a twin-turbo V6 with less technology. It’s believed Porsche has had representation at a number of recent meetings which have discussed the 2021 F1 engine regulations.

    The latest news is certainly likely to spike the interest of Red Bull — which continues to have on-going discussions with its current engine partner, Renault, regarding unreliability — Williams, and possibly McLaren.

    Related: 2018 Porsche Cayenne — First details

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    Jim McGill


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