Red Bull team principal Christian Horner has explained why he chose Ford to become the team’s new engine supplier rather than Porsche.
Last summer, rumours intensified that Red Bull would be signing a contract with Porsche to become the team’s new engine supplier for 2026, only for the deal to fall apart at the 11th hour.
With Porsche gone and Honda still unsure whether to re-enter F1, Red Bull agreed a deal with Ford, who once owned the team when it was called Jaguar Racing.
Ford has a rich history of racing in F1, producing the innovative DFV engine and helping power Benetton’s Michael Schumacher to his first title in 1994, which would be Ford’s last.
Speaking at the launch of the RB19 in New York City to Total-Motorsport.com and selected media outlets, Horner explained what the partnership with Ford will look like and what both parties are set to gain.
“It’s a very different relationship to what we discussed with Porsche; this is a purely commercial and technical deal,” said Horner.
“There’s no exchange of any shares or participation within the business. It’s a straightforward agreement where we can share access to r&d, particularly on the EV side.
“On the commercial side, obviously, with Ford being so prevalent in the US, it’s, as a commercial partner, it enables us to help achieve even more penetration in that market.”
Horner pays tribute to Honda
The signing of Ford signals the official end of Red Bull’s fruitful relationship with Honda, which will now end at the culmination of the 2025 season.
Ever since teaming up with the Japanese manufacturer, the team have won 31 Grand Prix, two drivers’ championships and one constructors’ title ending Mercedes seven year reign of dominance in the sport.
Horner briefly paid tribute to Honda, calling them an incredible company as he expressed his hope that both parties will push themselves to the end of their current regulations.
“We’ve had an incredible partnership with Honda,” said Horner. “When they initially announced their withdrawal from F1 in 2020, it was with great sadness. And that’s what prompted the creation of Red Bull Powertrains.
“As we set off on that journey, there was a change of plan with Honda, thankfully to agree to continue to supply engines to the end of 2025.
“We have a contract until the end of 25, we have a great working relationship, they’re an incredible company, and we will be pushing with Honda to the last race of 2025.”