Honda insists that not continuing in partnership with Red Bull beyond the 2025 season is not being viewed as a failure.
Earlier this month, Red Bull announced a tie-up with Ford for the 2026 campaign, when new technical regulations will come into play.
Honda has partnered Red Bull for several years and has taken two Drivers’ Championships and one Constructors’ title with it in 2021 and 2022.
Honda opted to formally leave F1 at the end of the 2021 season, but it has remained close to the Red Bull Powertrains organisation by offering technical assistance.
The Japanese manufacturer has signalled its intent to return to F1 in three years’ time by signing up for the next cycle of regulations along with five other parties.
Although it does not yet have a team to partner with, it has said that it has received interest from various teams on the grid.
Although its alliance with Red Bull will conclude when the new regulations come into play, Honda Racing Corporation president Koji Watanabe insisted it is not a failure.
“It was not a failure – we never really saw that as any failure of any sort,” Watanabe said.
“As a technical partner we’re always in contact with RB, so there’s many topics that we discuss, and many we have discussed.
“But out of this dialogue it was decided that we will not continue this partnership beyond 2025 so there’s nothing that’s fixed from 2026, it is as simple as that.
“As I have said before, with Red Bull, we have constant communication and we have worked together in many areas.
“And they made their decision. And there’s nothing further I can say about this.”
Honda decided to leave the sport a handful of years ago to focus on the development of electric road car technology.
But as F1’s latest regulations are focused on increased electrification and sustainability, it has opted to sign up for its new era.
Honda’s F1 project leader Tetsushi Kakuda insists that there would be no need to increase its engineering department to handle the development of the Power Unit.
“We have shifted a great amount of resources to carbon neutrality but to operate the PU, the work we have, we do have the necessary manpower here in Sakura,” he said.
“But the assumption now is we don’t have to do new development every year, so any technical development, the current team is going to handle it.”
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