What are the power source options for Red Bull? Renault has to supply
By Robert McGillivray 02 October 2020 | 15:40
Now that Honda has decided to leave Formula 1, Red Bull Racing will be without power from 2022 onwards. The Austrian team will therefore have to look for a new engine supplier as a matter of urgency. MaximumF1 looks at the options the team still has.
Christian Horner's team still has a number of options to remain active in the world of Formula 1. With the departure of the Japanese supplier, looking for an existing engine supplier appears to be the most important option.
Opportunities small at Ferrari or Mercedes
After the separation between Renault and Red Bull, it would be very painful to return to the French supplier. So in all likelihood Horner will first explore his options with Ferrari and Mercedes. However, both producers already have quite a few customers.
Ferrari supplies their power source to two teams: Haas and Alfa Romeo. At Mercedes it's even busier, next to their own team they supply their winning engine to Williams and Racing Point, and from 2021 also to McLaren. The chance that Red Bull will become the fourth customer here seems small.
Renault is obliged to deliver
Now that McLaren is switching to a Mercedes engine in 2021, the French engine manufacturer has no customers left. So in principle there is plenty of room for Red Bull to knock on Cyril Abiteboul's door. A return to Renault seems unlikely at first sight.
However, nothing could be further from the truth. Should the team of Max Verstappen and Alexander Albon not find an engine supplier at other parties, Renault is obliged to provide Red Bull with a power source. So Horner is allowed to force an engine from the French in case of an emergency.
Other options: end of the line for Red Bull?
If Red Bull cannot find a supplier and does not want to buy from Renault, there are two more options. The Austrian team can try to lure a new manufacturer into the sport, such as Volkswagen. However, given the time that is left, it will be difficult to produce another competitive source of power.
Should Red Bull not find a supplier, fate will strike for the team and they will have to leave Formula 1. Although the Concorde Agreement has been signed, teams can get out of this every year and turn their backs on the sport. This will be the very last option for Red Bull. (Photo: Red Bull Content Pool/Getty Images)
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