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Audi Gives Update on Formula 1 Power Unit Development

Audi Gives Update on Formula 1 Power Unit Development

Audi has given an update on the development of its new Formula 1 power unit that will debut at the start of the next technical regulations cycle in 2026.

In a Q&A session, the chief executive and chief technology officer at Audi Formula Racing go through the bench testing that has been completed so far and what’s to come.

The German manufacturer is joining F1 in 2026 under a new technical regulations cycle, which includes refreshed hybrid power unit rules. The 1.6-litre V6 internal combustion engine has been retained, but the MGU-H has been dropped and the MGU-K has been uprated to produce almost three times the amount of power as the current electrical system. Audi is developing its powertrain in-house at Neuberg, but components are also being built at Hinwil, the current base of the Sauber F1 team in which Audi is purchasing a 100 per cent stake.

On what has been achieved so far

Adam Baker, Audi Formula Racing CEO: ‘After just two years, our power unit, consisting of a combustion engine, electric motor, battery and control electronics, is running dynamically on the test bench. Successfully marrying the various components into a single unit is the result of hard work and great teamwork. The Audi power unit has already covered simulated race distances on the test bench. We gained a lot of testing time with the individual components in 2023 and were able to incorporate the experience gained into the next construction stages in parallel. Significant milestones and goals have been achieved, which gives the entire team a good feeling.’

Stefan Dreyer, Audi Formula Racing CTO: ‘We implemented a very ambitious modernisation and expansion of our test facility. Today, we have 22 state-of-the-art test benches at the site. Our new development tools are state-of-the-art and have enabled us to achieve a steep learning curve. By testing on the test bench under simulated racing conditions we gain important insights in this phase of the project. After the successful race distances with the power unit we will soon be doing the same with the entire drive system, which means the combination of power unit and transmission. At the same time, we are going full throttle with performance development in order to achieve the goals we have set ourselves.’


On the tracks that have been used in bench testing

SD: ‘We run the power unit on the test bench with different layouts from the current F1 calendar, depending on the purpose of the test. For example,…

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