Ferrari perform power unit u-turn to help Red Bull
Ferrari has had a change of heart and will agree to a power unit freeze to assist Red Bull - but only if Formula 1 brings forward its planned engine regulation changes by a year.
Red Bull engine partner Honda announced in October it will be quitting F1 at the end of next season, leaving both it and AlphaTauri without a power unit from 2022.
Red Bull is eager to purchase the power unit IP from the Japanese manufacturer and run a rebadged system, but in warning it would be unable to fund the development of the technology, called for an engine freeze.
Ferrari team principal Mattia Binotto, who initially declared the Scuderia was against such a prospect, is now supportive, but with the caveat the planned 2026 introduction of a new power unit is brought forward by a year to 2025.
“I think what we have said is there are already regulations in place where somehow Red Bull got a solution to be supplied by other manufacturers, that is no doubt," said Binotto. "We understand as well the intention to keep using the Honda engine for the future.
“We have had meetings in the last days with F1 and the FIA. I think, as Ferrari, we understand the situation. We are somehow supportive in trying to anticipate by one season, one year, the freezing of the engines.
“That would mean as well to anticipate to 2025 the new regulations for the power unit.
“So, knowing the situation, understanding the situation, it is not the first time that Ferrari has acted in a responsible way in that respect so we will support freezing by anticipating by one year the power units.”
Binotto did, however, concede bringing a regulation change forward would not be a simple task
“Certainly it's not an easy one," added Binotto. "At first, I think that to have a brand new form of power unit in 2025, we will need, by the middle of next year, to have clarity on the regulations."
Honda's F1 technical director Toyoharu Tanabe has confirmed that no decision has yet been reached with Red Bull over whether the team will take on the power unit after 2022, with discussions still ongoing.
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