Ford deal simpler than Porsche for Red Bull
By Mat Coch
Sunday 19th February, 2023 - 10:00pm
Red Bull boss Christian Horner described his operation’s tie-up with Ford as “very straightforward” versus what was discussed with Porsche.
Ford will return to Formula 1 in 2026 after it agreed to a strategic partnership with Red Bull.
That will see the American automaker’s name on the Red Bull Powertrains developed power unit and will consequently be known as a Red Bull Ford.
However, the American brand was not alone in discussing a possible relationship with last year’s constructors’ world champions.
During the 2022 season, Porsche also met to discuss its potential involvement.
That ultimately failed to come to fruition with a difference of opinion over ownership and control of the team understood to be the sticking point.
Red Bull Ford deal
“This is a very different relationship to what was discussed with Porsche,” Horner said of the Ford relationship.
“This is a purely commercial and technical deal, so there’s no exchange of any shares or participation within the business.
“It’s a very straightforward agreement where we will have the ability to share and access R&D, particularly on the EV [electric vehicle] side, and cell technology, software development, and so on.
“And then on the commercial side, with Ford being so prevalent in the US, as a commercial partner, it enables us to help achieve even more penetration in that market.”
Porsche deal collapse
Last July it was revealed that Porsche intended to acquire a 50 percent stake in Red Bull Racing.
That revelation came courtesy of documents made public by Morocco’s Conseil de la Concurrence which outlined a 10-year partnership between the racing team and automaker.
A statement in September subsequently confirmed those conversations had broken down.
“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,” it announced.
“This could not be achieved.”
Red Bull maintains a supply of Honda power units for now, with that relationship set to conclude once the current power unit regulation set ends after the 2025 season.
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