Formula 1 - the test-bed of the ultimate technology and innovations, will see its most significant engine technological advancement by 2026, wherein the maximized electrical power and sustainable fuels will play their role in powering the sport. Thanks to new engine regulations, effective from 2026, Audi will enter into the sport, with the MGU-K (or Kinetic Motor Generator Unit) multiplying the amount of electrical power produced by the current hybrid components. Moreover, the MGU-K will be developed to produce around 350kW of power and use sustainable fuels to make racing environment-friendly.
Audi has revealed its development at the Auto Shanghai exhibition, stating they are fit and prepared to test their F1 engines with a full hybrid drivetrain unit, electric motor, battery and electronic control unit by the end of the year. Other manufacturers and teams will also roll out their testing plans and schedule soon.
“The Audi Formula 1 project has really taken off in recent months. In the ongoing concept phase of the power unit, the foundation of our drivetrain for 2026 is being laid today.” says Oliver Hoffmann, Member of the Board of Management for Technical Development at AUDI AG.
Audi is also expanding its team for this project, wherein they have hired experts from outside, wherein the existing employees from the motorsport department are continuing on the development. Audi also intends to install additional test rigs in a new building with a floor area of around 3,000 square metres – a modular design allowing them to be put into operation before the space is fully finished in early 2024.
“Motorsport is an integral part of our DNA,” said Markus Duesmann, Chairman of the Board of Management of AUDI AG . He further said, “We are convinced that our Formula 1 commitment will strengthen Audi’s sporting focus. The racing series is continuously increasing its global reach, especially among young target groups and in our most important sales market: China.”
Audi has ramped up its R&D in almost every domain, from material to manufacturing, from chassis to hybrid powertrain; everything will witness an advancement that will make cars more efficient and future-proof.