Audi comment on F1 driver line-up plans amid Mick Schumacher links

It is thought that Audi have already agreed a majority buyout of Alfa Romeo.

Although Audi have announced their desire to enter Formula 1, no such formal announcement has been released to make this dream a reality.

It is thought that the German car manufacturer, alongside a currently unnamed partner, will complete a take over of Swiss-based F1 team Alfa Romeo.

Formula 1 project manager at Audi, Adam Baker, sees 2026 as the ideal year for the team to aim to enter the sport, with this coinciding with new engine regulations coming that year.

“As an entry point, 2026 is a very attractive year,” he stated.

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“There are rule changes, everyone now works in these financial restrictions so it’s a very different situation to the past in which some teams could have an advantage.”

With Baker revealing that the work is starting imminently to develop their car, the project leader has praised Audi for being able to hire from within, bypassing any recruitment stage before the planning can begin.

“We have been able to start very quickly with a very competent group of technicians, so we have not had to recruit anyone or hire outside,” he claimed.

“We’re starting now because the development of the electric side and the chassis is very important.

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“Testing will being in the middle of 2025, probably in Spain, and then we will start in 2026,” Baker outlined.

“We are about 130 people but we are building the team very quickly. What the final number will be is a good question, bearing in mind how much money there is for internal and external costs.

“But yes, it will be more than 300.”

With Audi clearly putting a monstrous amount of effort into their potential F1 journey, the sky has been set as the limit for the 2026 newcomers.

“We would love to be competitive from the start but we have to be realistic,” explained Baker.

“We want to be in a position to win races in three years.”

No team is complete without a pair of drivers, however, Audi have distanced themselves from claims that they have anyone in mind.

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“There is a lot of interest but also three and a half years to go and plenty of time for many changes in the driver market.

“We can dream but it would be speculation,” said Baker when quizzed about potential driver targets for the team.

With the team looking to make a 2026 debut, it remains to be seen who will partner them in their takeover, with this set to be announced later this year.