Honda has been contacted by a number of a Formula 1 teams interested in a partnership from 2026 onwards but has yet to decide if it will remain in the sport.
The Japanese manufacturer currently partners with Red Bull and AlphaTauri, and its involvement will be reflected in the rebranding of the power units as Honda RBPT from this season onwards. Red Bull will partner with Ford from 2026 but Honda Racing Corporation (HRC) has also registered as a manufacturer for the new set of regulations.
Addressing HRC’s developments ahead of the new F1 season, HRC president Koji Watanabe says there is no firm plans in place at this stage but that a number of teams have been in touch to show interest in working with Honda.
“Starting from 2026, Formula 1 is greatly shifting towards electrification and carbon neutrality is part of our corporate-wide target at Honda, so we think Formula 1 is in-line with our target, so that is why we have decided to register,” Watanebe said.
“We are curious about how Formula 1 is going as the top motor racing category and how that is going to look with more electrification. We want to keep a very close eye on that and that is why we made the decision to register as a power unit manufacturer.
“Since registering, we have been contacted by multiple Formula 1 teams. For the time being we would like to keep a close eye on where Formula 1 is going and just see how things go. For now we don’t have any concrete decisions on whether or not we will go back into joining Formula 1. But from the point of view of technological development, we think being involved in Formula 1 is going to help us.
“There’s nothing specific we can say about (2026), but we would like to be close to F1 and keep on watching the races.”
Having not reached an agreement with Red Bull to continue the successful partnership into the new regulations, Watanabe hinted that Honda would have been open to doing so.
“It was not a failure – we never really saw that as any failure of any sort. As a technical partner we’re always in contact with Red Bull, so there’s many topics that we discuss, and many we have discussed, but out of this dialogue it was decided that we will not continue this partnership beyond 2025 so there’s nothing that’s fixed from 2026, it is as simple as that.
“With Red Bull, we have constant communication and we have worked together in many areas. They made their decision and there’s nothing further I can say about this.”