Honda has recently admitted that they’ve been contacted by several F1 teams for 2026 after the Japanese manufacturer admitted that it’s not quite finished with Formula 1. Honda will supply engines to one or more teams from the 2026 season, most notably McLaren, as the two F1 former superpowers look to reunite their relationship.
Japanese manufacturer Honda said it had been approached by “several F1 teams” after officially registering as a powertrain manufacturer for the 2026-2030 seasons, it is said McLaren are the most likely to become works team for the Japanese manufacturer.
On the eve of the 2023 Formula One season, the FIA confirmed six manufacturers for the 2026-2030 regulatory cycle: Alpine, Audi, Ferrari, Mercedes, Red Bull Ford and…Honda, which had decided in 2021 to withdraw from top category motorsport before finally agreeing to accompany Red Bull until 2025 as a technical partner.
Honda announcement imminent
Once this date has passed, Honda will no longer have a client team in Formula 1 and we therefore expect an announcement very soon from the Japanese manufacturer, which is expected to join forces with a new team entering the world’s most prestigious championship or to work with a team already present on the grid.
In 2026, the new regulations will require teams to continue to use 1.6-litre turbo hybrid engines, but with a change in architecture to simplify the technology. This will include a significant increase in the proportion of energy supplied by electricity and the use of carbon-neutral synthetic fuels.
Speaking at a press conference on Monday, Honda president Koji Watanabe said the new rules were attractive to Honda because they align with Honda’s corporate strategy to electrify its entire range in the near future.
“Formula 1 is moving significantly towards electrification. Since carbon neutrality is our company-wide goal at Honda, we believe that the future direction of F1 is in line with our goal,” said Watanabe.
“That’s why we decided to register as a powertrain manufacturer. We are curious to see where F1 is going and what it will look like with more electrification.”
“We want to watch that very closely and that’s why we decided to register as a power unit manufacturer. And after we went through the registration process, we were contacted by several F1 teams.”
According to several sources, McLaren is the top team to have contacted Honda about an engine supply from the 2026 season onwards. The Woking-based team stopped using Honda engines at the end of 2017 to use Renault and then Mercedes engines until now.