Rumors have been circulating for quite a while that the VW Group is seriously considering entering Formula 1 with one of its brands. After recruiting some former Ferrari personnel, Audi was tipped to get the nod but, lately, there were talks about Porsche, too.
Motorsport reports that Gene Haas, who will field his own team in the 2016 season, this week said he hopes rumors about VW, Porsche’s parent company, entering F1 are true. “I think having big manufacturers coming in and supplying engines makes a lot of sense”, he told Autoweek and F1 business journalist Christian Sylt.
Porsche’s head of R&D Wolfgang Hatz, though, was quick to respond: “Formula 1 has never been an issue for us and won’t be”, he told Auto Motor und Sport. “Le Mans is a more attractive environment – there are more competitors and we learn more about the production of road cars.”
Porsche was involved as an engine supplier in F1 from 1983 to 1987, when it manufactured the TAG-branded (and funded) units that powered McLaren cars to two Constructors and three Drivers championships. Its 1991 attempt with the Footwork team was disastrous, failing to even qualify for half the races, leading to its departure.
Last year, Porsche returned to the LMP1 prototype class in the FIA Endurance Championship with the 919 Hybrid and for the past three years has also been racing and developing its 911 GT3 R Hybrid too.