Volkswagen AG’s supervisory and management boards are backing plans for the company’s Audi and Porsche brands to join Formula 1 as early as 2026.
Porsche and Audi, two of Volkswagen’s 12 car companies, have yet to make a final decision on joining the motorsport circuit but are expected to supply engines. The move has also been welcomed by F1 world champions Lewis Hamilton and Max Verstappen.
Volkswagen and F1 align through an effort to promote sustainability. F1 plans to be carbon neutral by 2030, while Volkswagen aims to be carbon neutral on its balance sheet by 2050, which includes vehicles, plants, and processes. F1 is implementing new engine rules in 2026, which will require all power units to run on 100% sustainable fuel.
Audi and Porsche would join separate racing teams in Formula 1.
- Porsche is pursuing a partnership with Red Bull Racing.
- Audi is expected to join McLaren’s racing team.
Last week, Audi reportedly raised its offer to buy a stake in McLaren’s F1 unit from $495 million to $718 million, according to a report by Germany’s Automobilwoche.
Formula 1 is seeking upward of $75 million per year for its U.S. media rights, according to a Sports Business Journal report. ESPN has held F1 rights since 2018 and is currently paying roughly $5 million per year on a deal that runs through this year.
ESPN is likely to renew, but Formula 1 has drawn interest from several broadcasters.