Red Bull team principal Christian Horner has confirmed that his team signed an engine deal for the 2016 season, though he did not disclose any information whatsoever regarding the manufacturer.
Right now, all we know is that Red Bull Racing will be on the grid next year, which is great news for both fans of the team and Formula fans. While Horner refused to name any names just yet, our guess is that Red Bull will be powered by Renault engines for at least one more year.
“We’ve entered the world championship, we’ve signed a contract for an engine, but I can’t tell you what it’ll be or called at the moment,” said Horner.
In case you missed it, that’s a very interesting way to phrase it, unless it’s on purpose to keep Renault speculations to a minimum – Renault are also expected to announce their return to Formula 1 as a factory team after the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.
Still, Horner did use the word “called” when talking about his team’s new engine, which might indicate that even if it is a Renault unit, it may function under a different name. Perhaps they’ll keep the Infiniti label after all.
Could it be they have made a deal with Honda, which was already willing to supply them but were stopped due to McLaren’s CEO, Ron Dennis, strong objections? Maybe they have found a way to convince him to change his mind, or will they use the Acura, the Japanese automaker’s luxury brand, name.
Mercedes is definitely out but Ferrari wouldn’t mind, though it’s hard to imagine how its units would be rebranded. Dare we say… Alfa Romeo? They do have a Formula 1 history after all, though this is too far fetched. Just playing the guessing game, that’s all…
Horner added that “we’re announcing different partners – and we’ve some great partners to be announced in the week ahead – so yes we’ll be there unless something extremely untoward happens,”.
Even if Red Bull return with a Renault unit (regardless of what they call it), the fact that they had to jump through all of these hoops without knowing what engine they’ll be racing with, has already pushed back their development for next year.
Story references: skysports