While Honda are preparing for their latest Formula 1 exit, they have announced that they are continuing on with their IndyCar project for the “long-term”.
The Japanese engine manufacturer announced on Friday that they are exiting Formula 1 at the end of the 2021 season, leaving Red Bull and AlphaTauri without an engine partner and ending Honda’s latest Formula 1 spell at six years after first returning with McLaren in 2015.
Honda decided that, having achieved their goal of producing a race-winning engine in Formula 1 again, they would turn their attention ‘to strive for the realization of carbon neutrality by 2050’.
‘This goal will be pursued as part of Honda’s environmental initiatives which is one of the top priorities of Honda as a mobility manufacturer.’
But Honda are not ending all of their motorsport links. They are set to continue in Formula E, while a new long-term deal has recently been agreed to remain in IndyCar.
“To be able to announce a long-term, multi-year extension with our two great partners is phenomenal,” IndyCar president Jay Frye said, also referring to the fact that Chevrolet has also agreed to a new deal.
“It’s an exciting time in IndyCar with the innovations in the car, the new 2.4-liter engine and hybrid technology.
“Due to the global COVID-19 pandemic, the introduction of the 2.4-liter, twin-turbocharged V-6 with
hybrid technology will be delayed to the year 2023.
“Working in partnership with Chevrolet and Honda, the new engine will give the most exciting and competitive racing series in the world an additional 100 horsepower, ultimately producing over 900.”
Ted Klaus, president of Honda performance development, said the reason for the renewal was because their vision of the sport matches IndyCar.
“Honda welcomes this step to the future by IndyCar, action that mirrors Honda’s efforts to develop and manufacture high-performance, electrified products that will meet industry challenges and delight our customers,” Klaus said.
“At Honda, we race to develop our people, to innovate technologies and to engage fans. We are proud of our uninterrupted, 27-year leadership in INDYCAR, and look forward to delivering a next-generation Honda 2.4-litre hybrid power unit.”
While Honda were unwilling to commit to Formula 1 beyond 2021, the new deal with IndyCar lasts “well into the end of the decade”.
Red Bull, meanwhile, are looking likely to return to Renault power for the start of the 2022 campaign.