In early May, former Volkswagen Group CEO Herbert Diess confirmed Porsche and Audi will enter Formula 1 from the 2026 season when a new set of regulations will come into effect. Rumors had already been circulating about Zuffenhausen looking to ink a deal with Red Bull for the new F1 era in which cars will run on entirely synthetic fuel. A press release published today by Porsche confirms talks have been held in recent months, but not anymore.
The two parties have failed to reach an agreement because of differences in how the team would operate. Porsche wanted the F1 tie-up to be "based on equal footing," but Red Bull refused. The German sports car marque's desire was to provide more than just the engine by assuming half of the team's responsibilities.
"The premise was always that a partnership would be based on an equal footing, which would include not only an engine partnership but also the team. This could not be achieved."
Porsche F1 car unofficial rendering by Camille De Bastiani
Our sister site Motorsport.com has it on good authority Porsche effectively wanted to take a 50-percent share in Red Bull's F1 business, which ultimately represented the apple of discord. Interestingly, the initial plan was to formalize the deal in mid-July during the Austrian Grand Prix, but that obviously never happened as discussions dragged on.
Red Bull F1 head honcho Christian Horner insists the team should maintain its independence from 2026. During last weekend's F1 race at Zandvoort, he was quoted saying: "The team is the biggest marketing asset globally for Red Bull – why would we compromise that strategically for the long term? We're on a really exciting trajectory that isn't dependent on outside involvement or investment if there's strategically the right partner."
Although a deal with Red Bull is officially not happening, Porsche is still interested in joining F1: "With the finalized rule changes, the racing series nevertheless remains an attractive environment for Porsche, which will continue to be monitored."
Meanwhile, recent reports state Audi is looking to work out a deal with Sauber and enter F1 from 2026.