F1 News

alpine wants to get rid of renault power units and knocks on red bull's door

A remarkable partnership coming? Alpine knock on Red Bull's door for PU

18 June at 07:00
  • Ludo van Denderen

As a factory team, Alpine has been performing well below par this season, despite skyrocketing annual investments in the team. In part, the poor performance is due to the Renault power unit, which has actually been the weakest on the F1 grid for seasons. Alpine's management is looking for ways to turn the tide, with the option of quitting the Renault engines and becoming a customer team.

Meanwhile, team principal Bruno Famin is said to have inquired with Red Bull on behalf of Alpine about the possibility of using the Red Bull Powertrains from 2026. The Austrians do not see this as an immediate possibility, as it is a completely new power unit that, moreover, will already be used by two teams (Red Bull Racing and Visa Cash App RB). Facilitating a third team is too much of a stretch at the moment.

Which manufacturer wants to help Alpine?

Famin has also raised a ball with other manufacturers. Mercedes being open to the request seems unlikely, but is not out of the question. The Germans will not only supply themselves, but also McLaren and Williams with power units from 2026. Currently, Mercedes even has a fourth customer team in Aston Martin, but the manufacturer was actually keen to get back to a maximum of three teams. However, that is not a hard requirement. Ferrari facilitates two teams (Ferrari and Haas F1) in '26. Aston Martin then has Honda as their supplier, while Audi makes their debut in '26 with the team that is currently known as Sauber.

In Formula 1, no team will be left without a power unit. Should a team fail to reach an agreement with a supplier, the manufacturer with the fewest customer teams will be obliged to supply the engines. As mentioned, Alpine would have two options in that case: Audi and Honda.

Audi does not want a second team

As a newcomer, Audi is unlikely to be forced to immediately supply a second team with power units. Several months ago, the team already revealed to GPblog that it wanted to focus purely on its own team in the first period. That leaves Honda, the Japanese manufacturer currently enjoying success with Red Bull.