Audi provides update on its F1 engine: “Important milestones and goals have been achieved”

Audi has provided news regarding the development of its F1 engine, which will be introduced in 2026. In the German clan, there is a certain optimism upon reading the first encouraging results.

Published on 28/06/2024 à 10:00

Dorian Grangier

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Audi provides update on its F1 engine: “Important milestones and goals have been achieved”

©Audi

While the 2024 season is in full swing, with the frantic sequence of Grands Prix before the summer break, Audi has provided some news on the development of its F1 engine. The brand with the rings, which will take full control of the Sauber team, will debut with an in-house power unit in 2026, a year which coincides with the introduction of the new technical regulations. Since 2022 and the announcement of the arrival of the German firm in Formula 1, the engine – developed at the modernized Neuburg an der Danube plant – would have seen significant advances, according to Adam Baker, managing director of Audi Formula Racing.

“After only two years, our power unit, consisting of a combustion engine, an electric motor, a battery and control electronics, is running dynamically on the test bench, explains the Australian leader. The successful assembly of the various components into a single unit is the result of hard work and excellent teamwork. »

“The Audi power unit has already covered simulated racing distances on the test bench. We spent a lot of time testing the various components in 2023 and we were able to integrate the experience gained into the next stages of construction in parallel, he adds. Important milestones and goals have been achieved, which gives the entire team a feeling of satisfaction. »

Audi F1 Sauber engine

©Audi

Despite the many doubts surrounding Audi's arrival in Formula 1, the German manufacturer put an end to the rumors by taking 100% control of Sauber and by investing in its facilities, both in Neuburg and in Ingolstadt, Audi's headquarters.

“We have implemented a very ambitious modernization and expansion of our testing facilities, details Stefan Dreyer, director of engineering (CTO) at Audi. Today we have 22 state-of-the-art test benches on site. Our new development tools are at the cutting edge of technology and have allowed us to reach a significant learning curve. »

“By carrying out tests on the dyno under simulated racing conditions, we obtain important information in this phase of the project. After successfully covering racing distances with the power unit, we will soon do the same with the entire drive system, i.e. the combination of power unit and transmission , reveals Stefan Dreyer. At the same time, we are working hard on performance development in order to achieve the objectives we have set for ourselves. »

Audi, a development to convince Sainz?

By developing its engine in Germany, Audi must take up the challenge of working in concert with the Sauber factory, based in Hinwil in Swiss. A collaboration that began in January 2023 and has accelerated for several weeks, following the presentation of the 2026 technical regulations.

“On a technical level, we already work as a real factory team on both sites, underlines the director of engineering. The focus is on integrating the power unit with important details such as thermal management. The gearbox is also the subject of close collaboration. We develop the internal components in Neubourg, while the structural parts such as the gearbox housing and the rear axle are produced in Hinwil. Testing with the complete assembly, consisting of the power unit and transmission, takes place on our powertrain test bench. This division is timely in terms of performance and expertise. »

Obviously, the timing of this update concerning the 2026 engine does not seem trivial: like Williams, which announced Thursday the recruitment of new engineers to key positions, Audi is trying to reassure about its future to attract good drivers on the transfer market, in particular Carlos Sainz, coveted by several teams. A simple hypothesis, but one that makes sense in this very hectic and uncertain transfer window.

ALSO READ > Audi still hopes to sign Carlos Sainz

Dorian Grangier

A young journalist nostalgic for the motorsport of yesteryear. Raised on the exploits of Sébastien Loeb and Fernando Alonso.

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