Four Engine Makers Considering F1 Programs for 2021, Report Says
That includes Porsche, Aston Martin, Cosworth, and Ilmor.
Formula 1 officials revealed a proposal for simpler, louder, and cheaper engines for the 2021 season and beyond. This move was made to satisfy fan requests and attract new entrants to the series, though it hasn't received such a warm welcome from everyone. However, the cost-saving initiative has reportedly garnered new interest as Porsche, Aston Martin, Cosworth, and Ilmor are apparently weighing the option of joining in at the turn of the decade.
A recent report from the BBC detailed Cosworth and Ilmor's attraction to F1 after the new regulations are confirmed. That being said, there a chance of the two investing in the sport without these rule changes. Cosworth managing director Bruce Wood told the British outlet in an interview: "The current regulation is beyond any new entrant, technically and for the commercial investment it requires." Despite that, revised engine standards could change all of that. Wood continued, "The new proposal makes it possible for an independent or existing car company."
The idea of an independent engine supplier is certainly enticing to the current field. By partnering with a non-works company, teams wouldn't have to worry about competing with other factory-backed operations for attention and customer service. McLaren boss Zak Brown explained the situation earlier in the year saying, "It would be great to have an independent engine or two so that if you aren't in a situation where you have a manufacturer, you still have economical and yet still competitive options."
As for Porsche, Germany's Auto Bild reports that the Stuttgart manufacturer has become increasingly interested in Formula 1 after hearing the proposed regulation changes. Some have disagreed with this including former Porsche factory driver Mark Webber who is quoted saying, "Porsche in Formula 1? It will not happen." It's also been rumored that the automaker is working on a confidential engine project that may or may not be F1-related, so there seem to be definite signs of interest from the team.
Aston Martin has made its stance mostly clear on F1–if it becomes cheaper to join, then it will certainly be looked into. The British company only recently overcame a drastic downturn in road car sales, so money sits atop the priority list. CEO Andy Palmer has expressed his interest in the opportunity and his relationship with Red Bull bodes well for the team's future in the sport.