Find out more about our subscriptions

Mercedes open to Honda engine supply

Norbert HaugMercedes motorsport boss Norbert Haug has said the marque could supply the former Honda team with engines in 2009, provided any takeover leaves the team on a sound financial footing.

Although Mercedes has already committed to supplying a customer team for the first time, with Force India using its engines in 2009, Haug said that it could be possible to offer a deal to Honda.

"If there is a feasible solution with an investor for that team, we would be prepared to discuss it," Haug told "But the financial background needs to be there.

"You cannot give any presents at this time and in this (financial) climate, but we would like to help for the sake of Formula One. Ross Brawn and Nick Fry and their guys have done a good job so far, so if we could be in a position to help we certainly could try to do so.

"But the financial feasibility is very important. It needs to be 100 per cent bulletproof."

Haug says that a potential extra customer engine deal would not impinge on Mercedes's current operations, despite the challenges of adapting its power plant to last for three races and the introduction of Kinetic Energy Recovery Systems (KERS).

"This is not ideal timing," said Haug. "We have lots to do with KERS and the new rev limit and so on, which is a really big task.

"You have to do longer runs with the engines to prove they are ready. The guys in Brixworth are working flat out like never before. Even when we changed to V8 there was not as much to do as there is now."

Ferrari this week ruled themselves out as a potential engine supplier for the team despite former Scuderia technical director Ross Brawn, now Honda team principal, having reportedly spoken with the team about a deal.

  More news  
Read the AUTOSPORT Digital Edition
Visit the shop
See highlights from 60 years of AUTOSPORT
Paddock insight from group F1 editor Jonathan Noble
Grand Prix news updates from F1 editor Edd Straw
Breaking news feed
Live commentary feed
EXCLUSIVE: First image of Brawn GP car
Brawn GP take over Honda Racing
Fry: Honda announcement due soon
Mallya approved Mercedes Honda deal
Honda hold fire on shakedown plans
Honda edge closer to completing buyout
Honda preparing to test 2009 car
Honda team future looking 'good'
Honda: No 'serious' buyer for F1 team
Ecclestone says Honda rejected his help
F1 'must change' before Virgin joins
Ecclestone: Branson wants Honda deal
Honda: Shutting down team an option
Petrobras keen on future F1 return
Senna under no illusions about Honda
Virgin latest to be linked to Honda
Petrobras rules out sponsoring Honda
Honda confident of racing in 2009
Coulthard warns Button over future
Honda deny discussing bail-out
Honda silent on bail-out report
Richards hopes Honda can find buyer
Haug: No deadline for Honda deal
Fry: No conflict over team sale
DC: Button right to stick with Honda
Ferrari rule out Honda engine supply
Richards rules out Honda buyout
Dozen parties still in Honda talks
Brawn says saving jobs is main priority
Honda: Slim reports pure speculation
Slim one of four speaking to Honda
Richards considering Honda rescue deal
Honda to reveal details of buyer search
Button: It's Honda team or nothing
Williams's Parr expects another team to go
Richards: Honda's exit a lesson for F1
Button hopeful Honda will find buyer
Brawn interview: phoenix from the flames
Button offered Honda contract exit
Honda will accept 'small price' for team
Button stays positive after Honda exit
Villeneuve says Honda decision 'political'
Q & A with Nick Fry
Fry says Honda have three offers
Q & A with Max Mosley
Mosley warns more could follow Honda
Whitmarsh: F1 must slash costs
FOTA hopes Honda's team is sold
Honda boss apologises to Button
Ecclestone says F1 will survive crisis
Fry 'hopeful' team will race in 2009
Brawn and Fry 'committed' to save team
Honda confirm immediate F1 pull out
Honda set to reveal F1 exit plans
Nakamoto leaves Honda F1 team