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Audi announce major 2026 setback amid F1 preparations

Audi announce major 2026 setback amid F1 preparations

F1 News

Audi announce major 2026 setback amid F1 preparations

Audi announce major 2026 setback amid F1 preparations

Sauber F1's technical director, James Key, has claimed that the team will not be the 'final product' until their second year under Audi, in 2027.

Alfa Romeo, who will race under a brand new name next year, ended 2023 ninth in the constructors' championship, just four points clear of Haas in last place.

Although all eyes are on 2026 and the arrival of Audi, Key has warned people not to build up expectations too much.

READ MORE: Verstappen supports Hamilton and Mercedes in plea for major F1 rule change

The former McLaren man admitted that there is still plenty of work to be done and that 2026 may still be a formative year for the team.

Audi are set to enter F1 in 2026
2023 proved to be a difficult season for Alfa Romeo
Zhou Guanyu (L) and Valtteri Bottas (R) will continue with the team in 2024

Audi F1: We will be final product in 2027

“There is a lead time to people of course, with garden periods. So we're aware of that," Key told Motorsport.com.

"We're certainly not waiting for that, there's a lot of stuff we can do now without any extra people and so on.

“But ultimately, to achieve our goals, we have to expand in all the key areas, and in fact in all areas. Everywhere has got to take a step up regardless of where we are in that process.

“So that's the short-term ambition, exactly what we're doing now, working closely with Andreas [Seidl] on that for '24, as well as the future. And then we'll see how we go.

“I think ultimately, we're probably not going to be the final product that we're aiming for until about '27 time really, because there is a lot to do.

"But we'll be in far better shape as we approach '26. And that will give us the opportunity to take the step forward we need to."

READ MORE: F1 2024 car launches: Dates, times and how to watch live

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