Sauber and Honda have finally confirmed the long expected news that they will be partners from 2018.
Honda’s announcement makes it clear that it expects Sauber to be a second team alongside McLaren, despite ongoing suggestions that the British team will switch to Mercedes – leaving Sauber, possibly on an interim basis while the power unit is developed, as the sole Honda team.
If McLaren remains aligned to Honda the main advantage of having two teams is increased track mileage.
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“Our realignment is not just visible through the new ownership but also now with our new technological partnership with Honda,” said team boss Monisha Kaltenborn.
“We have set another milestone with this new engine era, which we await with huge excitement and of course we are looking for new opportunities. We very much look forward to our partnership with Honda, which sets the course for a successful future – from a strategic as well as from a technological perspective. We thank Honda for making this great partnership happen.”
Katsuhide Moriyama, Chief Officer, Brand and Communication Operations of Honda, added: “In addition to the partnership with McLaren which began in 2015, Honda will begin supplying power units to Sauber as a customer team starting from next year. This will be a new challenge in Honda’s F1 activities.
“In order to leverage the benefits of supplying to two teams to the maximum extent, we will strengthen the systems and capabilities of both of our two development operations, namely HRD Sakura and the operation in Milton Keynes. We will continue our challenges so that our fans will enjoy seeing a Honda with dominant strength as soon as possible.”