Honda boss: We will match Mercedes

Monday 01-September-2014 15:37

Honda motorsport chief Yasuhisa Arai is confident the Japanese manufacturer will be able to match fellow engine supplier Mercedes in 2015.

Following six years away from the sport, Honda will make its return to Formula 1 next season when it becomes McLaren's engine supplier.

This year's regulation change to 1.6-litre turbocharged V6 engines have given Ferrari and Renault-powered teams a lot of headaches, while those with Mercedes power units have enjoyed a good season.

When asked by the official Formula 1 website if they will the same successful start as Merc, Arai replied: "I have confidence that we will match Mercedes.

He added: "I can imagine that Mercedes found the perfect balance between their chassis and their power unit and that the others didn't find that balance. So we work together with McLaren as one team - because this is the only way to go."

Arai also confirmed that McLaren will be their only customer for the 2015 season, but they are yet to make a decision on 2016.

"In 2015 we don't have the plan to supply any team other than McLaren," he said. "In 2016 or after, if some teams or partners ask us to supply them too, we will take a look at that situation. But even in 2016 McLaren will be our main partner in F1.

"And even if we supply other teams from 2016 onwards our main focus will always be to win - to make the engine better through more data - and not necessarily to look at a return on investment. If you win that comes automatically."

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