Sauber will be powered by Honda from 2018 onwards, the team announced at the Russian Grand Prix ending months of speculation that such a move was on the cards for the Swiss team and the Japanese manufacturer.
Sauber will thus end the engine supply partnership with Ferrari which ran from 1997 to 2005 and again in 2010 until the end of this season. The Hinwill based team have also been powered by Mercedes, BMW and Ford during their 25 years in Formula 1.
Sauber released the following statement: “The Sauber F1 Team is very pleased to welcome Honda on-board as its new technological partner from 2018. This extensive strategic and technological realignment creates a new basis for the team. This Swiss-Japanese partnership will certainly unveil future opportunities for the Sauber F1 Team and Honda, and constitutes a cornerstone for our F1 future. The Sauber F1 Team thanks Ferrari for many years of collaboration in good as well as difficult times.”
Monisha Kaltenborn, CEO and Team Principal, added, “It is a great honor for the Sauber F1 Team to be able to work together with Honda in the coming seasons. Our realignment is not just visible through the new ownership but also now with our new technological partnership with Honda. We have set another milestone with this new engine era, which we await with huge excitement and of course we are looking for new opportunities. We very much look forward to our partnership with Honda, which sets the course for a successful future – from a strategic as well as from a technological perspective. We thank Honda for making this great partnership happen.”
Katsuhide Moriyama, Chief Officer, Brand and Communication Operations, Honda Motor Co., Ltd, commented, “In addition to the partnership with McLaren which began in 2015, Honda will begin supplying power units to Sauber as a customer team starting from next year. This will be a new challenge in Honda’s F1 activities. In order to leverage the benefits of supplying to two teams to the maximum extent, we will strengthen the systems and capabilities of both of our two development operations, namely HRD Sakura and the operation in Milton Keynes. We will continue our challenges so that our fans will enjoy seeing a Honda with dominant strength as soon as possible.”