Audi shares development insights of its power unit for Formula 1

In an interview, Audi Formula Racing CEO Adam Baker and CTO Stefan Dreyer shared an update of the development progress of Audi’s F1 power unit
Stefan Dreyer(left) in conversation at the test bench
Stefan Dreyer(left) in conversation at the test bench

Audi has released a few details and progress insights into their 2026 power unit, which has been underway at their Audi Formula Racing (AFR) facility in Neuburg, Germany. This is the first time Audi Formula Racing CEO Adam Baker and CTO Stefan Dreyer talked about their development ever since they first announced their plans to enter Formula 1. Audi will join the F1 World Championship as a power unit supplier when the new regulations come into action in 2026, wherein the electrical power will be increased and 100 percent sustainable fuels will be used. Audi acquired a majority stake in Sauber, which is currently running under the Stake banner and will become the Audi Factory team in 2026.

Sharing about the development, Audi Formula Racing CEO Adam Baker says, "The Audi Power Unit has already covered simulated race distances on the test bench. We gained a lot of testing time with the individual components in 2023 and were able to incorporate the experience gained into the next construction stages in parallel. Significant milestones and goals have been achieved, which gives the entire team a good feeling."

CTO Stefan Dreyer further said that they have 22 state-of-the-art test benches at the test facility , giving them quite a learning about the development, and has emphasised on accelerating their performance goals to achieve the desired results set by them. They will soon be testing the entire drive system under simulated racing conditions. 

"Hearing the Audi Power Unit being simulated today on tracks like Spielberg, Singapore or Las Vegas, not only gives everyone involved goosebumps, but also gives us the feeling that we are a big step closer to our first race in 2026.", says Stefan Dreyer.

Audi Racing Team benefits from their exposure to Le Mans, Formula E, and Dakar Rally enabling them with enough data and learning. However, the dynamics of F1 are on different levels, and they are committed to making the mark and believe partners and suppliers will enable them to achieve their goals.

CTO Stefan Dreyer says, "So far, we have achieved all the targets we set ourselves for performance and efficiency in this phase. In addition, our fuel development has been running since 2022 with a strong partner who has many years of experience in Formula 1."

Talking about the recruitment and human resources required for R&D, Audi Formula Racing CEO Adam Baker says, "The local proximity to our parent company, Audi, in Ingolstadt, is a great advantage for us in many ways. There are many technical experts in the region, especially for the development of drivetrain components. The other F1 Power Unit manufacturers are based in the UK, France, Italy and Japan. If you want to bring in employees from competitors, they usually have to move to another country – that's a challenge, but it's no greater for us than for anyone else."

The development is underway, with all the interdependent teams working to achieve the company's desired results. The brand is ambitious about its development and is investing positively in its R&D. 

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