Audi has provided an update on the progress of the Formula 1 project. The number of employees is increasing and a hybrid engine is to be running on the test bench by 2023.
“The Audi Formula 1 project has really picked up speed in the last few months,” reveals Audi Board Member for Development Oliver Hoffmann proudly. Although the Ingolstadt team will not enter the premier class until 2026, preparations are already in full swing.
“In the ongoing concept phase of the power unit, the basis of our drive unit for 2026 is being created today. We attach great importance to detailed work, for example with materials or production technologies,” says Hoffmann.
“The focus is also on topics such as the energy management of the hybrid drive. Because efficiency is a decisive success factor for Formula 1 and future mobility, these approaches will advance both worlds,” he explains.
In a press release on Tuesday, Audi revealed that a single-cylinder engine has been in test operation since the end of 2022, which “provides valuable insights into the development of the test bench setup and the validation of the measuring instruments”.
The company also announces: “The first hybrid drive unit, consisting of a combustion engine, electric motor, battery and control electronics, should be running on the test bench this year and form the basis for the future vehicle concept.”
“In addition, the dynamic development simulator in Neuburg will be brought up to Formula 1 standards and the development of the Audi power unit will continue to advance,” they emphasize and reveal that the Neuburg site is also growing.
Audi increases number of employees for Formula 1
At the end of 2022, 220 people were still employed there, but according to their own statements, there are now 260. “By the end of the year, the increase in personnel should be completed and the team should consist of more than 300 employees,” it says.
Neuburg is also expanding spatially. From the second half of 2023, further test benches for the development of the power unit are to be installed in a new building with a floor area of around 3,000 square meters that has already been announced.
“A modular design allows the state-of-the-art test benches to be put into operation even before the building is completed in early 2024,” it says. From 2026, Audi will then start in the premier class.
At the beginning of the year it was announced that the first minority stake in the Sauber Group had already been acquired. The racing team from Hinwil will be completely taken over by 2026.