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Audi Sauber

Sauber assert Audi’s unwavering commitment to F1

Audi remain totally focused on 2026 Formula 1 entry, despite it's radio silence approach, fanning the flames of speculation about its future according to Sauber chiefs

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Since the announcement of their plans to join Formula 1, Audi have been rather quiet. However, Alessandro Alunni Bravi has insisted that there’s a good reason for Audi’s silence.

Audi Sauber
Audi’s show car in Formula 1 (Credit:

German automotive giant Audi sent shockwaves through the motorsport world last year, confirming its intention to enter into Formula 1 as a constructor through motorsport giant Sauber.  Audi’s debut onto the grid is scheduled for 2026 with Sauber having purchased a large take in Audi.

Despite this high-profile announcement, Audi has chosen to take a deliberate vow of silence surrounding its plans for the 2026 entry, raising eyebrows and leaving the public totally in the dark regarding the development progress of their Formula 1 venture. This ‘strategic’ approach has opened the door for much speculation surrounding the manufacturer’s dedication to the sport.

 Early Rumours

Rumours surfaced earlier this year, suggesting that Audi might be lagging behind in the development stages of its power unit to be used in their Formula 1 endeavours. This was backed by recent reports from a German media outlet pointing towards the possibility of Audi reconsidering, or completely abandoning, their plans to enter at all.

 The Audi-Alfa Romeo Partnership: A Reason for Cautious Communication

However, the rumours were promptly put to rest by current Team Principle at Alfa Romeo, Alessandro Alunni Bravi. Bravi provided a brief insight as to the radio silence, shedding light on the circumstances surrounding Audi’s seemingly tight-lipped demeanour. As reported by Autosport, Bravi emphasised:

“Audi has a strong commitment to Formula 1 and, of course together with Sauber, this commitment comes from a decision not only of the board of Audi but also the advisory board of Audi/Volkswagen. So, it’s a group decision and the commitment is there.”

Bravi went on to say:

“Why there is a lack of communication is simple. We are Alfa Romeo F1 Team Stake. So, until the end of the year, we have certain limitations in communicating about the team, about the future, about the involvement of Audi, and we fully respect Alfa Romeo for this.”

A strong recruitment plan for Audi 

Amidst the silence, news has come out surrounding the recruitment plans within Alfa Romeo. The most notable being the hiring of the British-born James Key, assuming the role of the new Technical Director for Alfa Romeo. Speaking on this and the current focus, Bravi continued saying:

“We are working hard to develop the structure of the team. We have a strong recruitment plan in place… It’s not a matter of the involvement of Audi in financing the team or sustaining this development.

“We have two owners, you know, two shareholders. There is a governance in place according to the different stages of the transaction that will be completed ahead of the 2026 season.

“We are proceeding with the investment plan, with everything in accordance with the governance that has been agreed.”

Anticipation Builds

Audi’s full take over of Sauber has been planned in meticulous stages, with the take over not to be complete until 2026. Bravi has totally denounced rumours surrounding  any unrest regarding investment plans set up prior to the German giant’s involvement.

The deliberate reticence observed by Audi within the Formula 1 sphere has been explained as a consequence of the team’s existing ties and agreements, implying the extent of their engagement will gradually unveil itself, aligned with the terms of their collaboration with Alfa Romeo. Bravi went on to say:

“We don’t want to make any kind of announcement or more than what is strictly related to the race and the championship. The commitment, as I said, is there.”

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