Max Verstappen has aired his disappointment that Red Bull couldn’t reunite with engine manufacturer Honda after they revealed their intention to compete under the new engine regulations.
The Japanese manufacturer announced on Wednesday that they would be entering into a partnership with Aston Martin when Formula 1 introduces new engine regulations in 2026.
Prior to this, Honda had announced its intention to “conclude” their involvement in F1 at the end of the 2021 season, expressing concern over meeting its carbon neutrality and economic targets but F1’s 2026 regulation changes mean that the engine manufacture can seemingly compete in the sport while meeting its climate targets by 2050.
In February 2021 the creation of Red Bull Powertrains was announced and as the team prepared for life after Honda, Red Bull revealed that they would be entering into a “longterm strategic technical partnership” with American automaker Ford.
But Verstappen expressed his regret that the current situation made it impossible for Honda and Red Bull to reunite.
“I think from our side, of course, it’s a bit unfortunate how all of that turned out.
“Because a few years ago, they say we’re gonna stop, so then Red Bull sets up its own engine division, and then at one point they say no, we continue.
“Unfortunately, once you’re already in the process of building a whole engine yourself, you can’t really work together anymore. It’s a bit of a shame, I would say.
“We always have and had a really good relationship with them, and then seeing them go to Aston Martin is a bit of a shame.”
The Honda brand returned to Formula 1 as a power unit supplier in 2015, initially with McLaren and subsequently partnering Red Bull’s two teams from 2019. They hope that their campaign with Aston Martin under the new regulations will “become a platform which will facilitate the development of our electrification technologies.”
Verstappen continued: “We are also very excited from our side from 2026 onwards to see what’s going to happen together with Ford. It is what it is.
“A few years ago, we thought they were gonna leave, now they stay and they go with Aston Martin.
“For Aston Martin, it’s really good, they have a great engine, we all know that. So it is what it is.”