Mercedes to sort engine plans by Monza

Mercedes-Benz is hoping to reveal its customer engine plans for 2010 at the Italian Grand Prix, amid mounting speculation that a deal to supply Red Bull Racing has now been agreed

Mercedes to sort engine plans by Monza

AUTOSPORT revealed in April that Red Bull Racing was chasing a supply of Mercedes-Benz engines for next year, once its current contract with Renault comes to an end later this season.

It is understood that Red Bull Racing's recent engine problems have accelerated the moves towards Mercedes-Benz, with an announcement on the outcome of those negotiations expected imminently.

A Mercedes-Benz deal with Red Bull Racing would mean McLaren's engine partner supplying four teams in total next year - as Brawn GP and Force India will also receive customer units.

Mercedes-Benz motorsport boss Norbert Haug told AUTOSPORT that he could not reveal the details of any discussions that his car manufacturer was having, but said news would come at the Italian GP in a fortnight's time.

"I definitely will not mention any team names," he explained. "These are confidential negotiations, and I hope by Monza we know everything - so that is a fortnight away. Everything should be finalised by then.

"We have talked to various teams, more than one team, and I would like some understanding that these are confidential discussions so I cannot talk about it any more."

F1's regulations stipulate that any manufacturer supplying more than two teams in F1 needs special dispensation from the FIA. Haug confirmed that his company had received such approval to supply four teams.

"We have that in writing, and I think the FIA is very interested in a manufacturer who helps in this situation," he explained. "There are not so many who would jump in and volunteer and would want more than one customer team, but you have to have the logistics, you have to have the capacity and you need to build it up.

"We could not have done it two years ago, but all in all we build half the engines for four teams including rebuilding that we did for our own team two years ago. This is a big, big efficiency programme. It also helps refinancing, but you need to be absolutely very lean. I am not sure whether everyone could do that."

Red Bull Racing team principal Christian Horner said earlier in the Belgian GP weekend that his team was close to making a final decision about its plans - and that recent engine problems would not be the only factor in what his team did.

"We're obviously in a position where, as an independent team, we have a choice of engine," he said. "We've been very, very happy with the supply that we've had from Renault for the last three years.

"Any decision that will be made, will be made not on the outcome of a single weekend but based on what we believe offers us the best opportunity of performance and relationship for the future.

"We haven't made any firm decisions yet, but we're obviously nearing a time when we need to make a commitment for next year."

shares
comments
Q & A with Vijay Mallya
Previous article

Q & A with Vijay Mallya

Next article

Tyre issues are back, says Brawn

Tyre issues are back, says Brawn
How departing F1 boss Brawn views F1’s new rules - and the future Plus

How departing F1 boss Brawn views F1’s new rules - and the future

Multiple-title-winning designer and team boss Ross Brawn is finally leaving Formula 1 after nearly 50 years in motorsport. But he still has plenty of insights on what’s working and what comes next, as he revealed to Autosport in a far-reaching exclusive interview in Abu Dhabi

Formula 1
Dec 2, 2022
The key F1 management call Ferrari must make to avoid more defeat Plus

The key F1 management call Ferrari must make to avoid more defeat

OPINION: Mattia Binotto’s departure from Ferrari will naturally bring a range of changes across the Formula 1 team. But how the changes shape up and the impact they could have is set to be dictated by a key direction Ferrari’s top dogs will need to pick

Formula 1
Nov 30, 2022
The difference between Mercedes’ stumble and the fall of F1 giants Plus

The difference between Mercedes’ stumble and the fall of F1 giants

OPINION: Mercedes endured its worst season of the hybrid Formula 1 era, but was mercifully spared its first winless campaign in over a decade late on. It has owned up to the mistakes it made which led to its troubled W13. And while its task to return to title-challenging contention is not small, its 2022 season seems more like a blip than the beginning of a downward spiral.

Formula 1
Nov 29, 2022
The physical focus bringing out the best of an F1 midfield star Plus

The physical focus bringing out the best of an F1 midfield star

Esteban Ocon likes to point out he’s the first driver since Lewis Hamilton to emerge from a spell as Fernando Alonso’s team-mate with a superior overall points record. While some may disagree, as LUKE SMITH discovered, the 2021 Hungarian GP winner reckons it’s not just luck which has made him France’s pre-eminent Formula 1 driver of the moment…

Formula 1
Nov 28, 2022
How Red Bull's dynamic leader shaped its F1 philosophy Plus

How Red Bull's dynamic leader shaped its F1 philosophy

The death of Dietrich Mateschitz last month has not only deprived Red Bull of its visionary founder, it has shorn Formula 1 of one of its most influential benefactors. Mateschitz himself was famously media-shy, preferring to let the brand do the talking on his behalf. And, while it’s now normal to speak of Red Bull F1 titles and champions made, Mateschitz never assumed it would be easy or even possible – as ANTHONY ROWLINSON discovered during this previously unpublished interview from 2006…

Formula 1
Nov 27, 2022
Can Mercedes break Formula 1's cycle of doom? Plus

Can Mercedes break Formula 1's cycle of doom?

OPINION: Teams that have dominated for long periods throughout Formula 1's history often take years to get back to the top of the tree once they've slipped down. But it remains to be seen whether the same will happen to Mercedes after a challenging 2022 season

Formula 1
Nov 24, 2022
What hurt Perez most in his ill-fated fight for second in Abu Dhabi Plus

What hurt Perez most in his ill-fated fight for second in Abu Dhabi

Arguably the favourite in the battle to finish second best in 2022's Formula 1 standings, Sergio Perez's two-stop strategy at Abu Dhabi couldn't take him ahead of Charles Leclerc when the music stopped - and several key factors ultimately precluded him from the much-coveted runner-up spot

Formula 1
Nov 23, 2022
The Abu Dhabi momentum that can propel Leclerc and Ferrari to F1 2023 success Plus

The Abu Dhabi momentum that can propel Leclerc and Ferrari to F1 2023 success

OPINION: Charles Leclerc achieved his target of sealing runner-up in the 2022 world championship with a masterful drive behind Max Verstappen in Abu Dhabi. And that race contained key elements that may help him, and Ferrari, go one better in Formula 1 2023

Formula 1
Nov 22, 2022