Audi draws a line through possible Formula 1 programme again

Formula 1 is completely off Audi's agenda at present, according to the board member responsible for technical development

Stefan Knirsch, who recently took over the role from Ulrich Hackenberg, said Audi's focus on electric and hybrid technology was better served in the World Endurance Championship.

He also hopes the DTM - where Audi also has a major works presence - will move in a similar direction.

Asked by Autosport's sister publication Autocar about the chances of a future Audi F1 programme, Knirsch replied: "F1 for Audi is absolutely not a topic.

"We are focusing on the World Endurance Championship and DTM.

"We want to win Le Mans in a championship where electric and hybrid technology plays a very major role, while we are in discussions with the DTM about when we can introduce this kind of technology."

DIETER RENCKEN: Why VW Group's F1 disinterest is no surprise

Last week Wolfgang Durheimer, head of motorsport for Audi's parent company the Volkswagen Group, dismissed F1's sporting and political situation as "not predictable enough" to justify any of his brands entering.

"On the regulations front there are a lot of rumours around the engine side and the supporting technology side," he said.

"Before you commit the kind of money needed you must see five years of rules stability - there can't be the possibility of rules changes, of more or less engine cylinders coming in, or the hybrid system changing away from technology you are developing on road cars.

"On the ownership side there are also big questions the sport must answer.

"If you are a big business making a big investment you expect to have some influence on the set-up, with an assurance the present ownership will last.

"In F1 it seems the owners will not be there forever and that creates some instability."

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