Mattia Binotto comments on Ferrari being ‘afraid’ of Audi and Porsche

Both Audi and Porsche are expected to announce their plans to join the F1 grid imminently.

Mattia Binotto says Audi and Porsche are welcome in Formula 1, but they mustn’t become more “relevant” in the sport than Ferrari.

Audi and Porsche have been widely expected to join the F1 grid for a long time, and it now looks like both of their arrivals will soon be announced.

It’s all but certain that Porsche will become Red Bull’s engine supplier for the 2026 campaign and beyond, with it said that they’ll purchase half of the team.

Audi meanwhile are reported to have reached an agreement to enter into a partnership with Sauber, currently known as Alfa Romeo.

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With the vast resources that the Volkswagen-owned brands have at their disposal, many expect both to threaten the likes of Ferrari, Red Bull and Mercedes at the top of the sport.

Binotto claims the Italian team aren’t afraid of that happening but does say that the German companies can’t become more relevant than the Scuderia.

“We are not afraid,” he said. 

“Ferrari have been there right from the start. I think we know what’s good for the future of Formula 1. Our voice is an important voice. 

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“The newcomers are welcome, but they must not be more relevant than Ferrari.”

It has taken such a long time for Audi and Porsche to confirm their F1 plans because, due to existing power unit manufacturers including Ferrari constantly introducing new demands, the 2026 engine regulations have only just been finalised.

Binotto denies that such demands show fear though, instead arguing that they just wanted to make sure that the right calls were made.

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“Why is it taking so long? Because we are negotiating the future of our business,” he added.

“It’s about the powertrain between 2026 and 2030 and we have to take into account where the auto industry is heading.

“It’s right to take time to arrive at the best result, or let’s say the best compromise. In the end, it will always be a compromise.

“There was a framework agreement that had already been voted on in the World Council. This framework agreement then had to be cast into a set of regulations. In the meantime, there was a change in the office of the FIA President, which also cost more time. 

“It would not have served anyone’s interests if we had made the wrong decisions hastily.”

Both Audi and Porsche are expected to announce their respective plans before the end of the current season, with talk that at least one could do so during the Belgian GP weekend.