Through this deal, which had been under discussion since Sauber made an initial proposal, Honda will further accelerate its pursuit of energy management technologies and improvement of the competitive strength of its power unit.
“In addition to the partnership with McLaren which began in 2015, Honda will begin supplying power units to Sauber as a customer team starting from next year,” confirmed Honda brand chief officer Katsuhide Moriyama.
“This will be a new challenge in Honda’s F1 activities. In order to leverage the benefits of supplying to two teams to the maximum extent, we will strengthen the systems and capabilities of both of our two development operations, namely HRD Sakura and the operation in Milton Keynes.”
For Sauber, it will bring the team back up to date in terms of engines, as it is competing the 2017 season with a year-old Ferrari power unit. That decision was made to focus on the team’s long-term future and securing a proper engine deal was part of that vision.
Sauber F1 team principal Monisha Kaltenborn said the statement was a “great honour” for her team.
“It is a great honor for the Sauber F1 Team to be able to work together with Honda in the coming seasons. Our realignment is not just visible through the new ownership but also now with our new technological partnership with Honda.”
“We have set another milestone with this new engine era, which we await with huge excitement and of course we are looking for new opportunities. We very much look forward to our partnership with Honda, which sets the course for a successful future – from a strategic as well as from a technological perspective. We thank Honda for making this great partnership happen.”