Despite General Motors’ (GM) commitment to join Formula 1 as an engine manufacturer in 2028, supporting Andretti’s bid to become the eleventh team, existing F1 teams remain unconvinced. The key issue for teams like Ferrari and Mercedes is understanding how Andretti’s entry would add value to the sport.
Between the lines:
– GM’s registration as an F1 engine supplier is a significant move, yet it doesn’t directly translate to support for Andretti’s team entry.
– F1 teams are concerned about the financial implications of an eleventh team, fearing dilution of the sport’s revenue.
– Team principals are calling for hard data to support claims that Andretti’s presence would boost F1’s value and popularity.
– Andretti faces the challenge of needing an interim power unit before Cadillac’s entry, raising questions about the timing of their bid.
In the high-speed world of Formula 1, adding a new team to the grid is more complex than a quick pit stop. Andretti, backed by GM’s Cadillac brand, is revving up for an entry, but they’re finding the current grid holders aren’t ready to wave the green flag just yet. The crux of the issue? Show us the money – or rather, the data that proves an eleventh team is more boon than burden.
Ferrari’s Frederic Vasseur and Mercedes’ Toto Wolff are among the team principals putting the brakes on Andretti’s aspirations. They’re not dismissing the idea of a new engine supplier; in fact, they welcome it. But when it comes to expanding the team lineup, they’re looking for concrete evidence that Andretti can fuel F1’s growth without siphoning off the existing teams’ resources.
Williams’ James Vowles is also keeping a cautious eye on the rearview mirror. While acknowledging GM’s potential to turbocharge F1’s appeal, he’s more focused on ensuring his team’s financial engine doesn’t stall out with the addition of another competitor.
And then there’s the timing of it all. Andretti aims to hit the track as early as 2025, but Cadillac’s engines won’t be ready until 2028. Haas’ Guenther Steiner wonders if it’s wise to let Andretti join the race before their power unit partner is ready to take the grid.
As the checkered flag waves on this discussion, it’s clear that Andretti’s bid is more than just a test of speed – it’s a strategic negotiation that will require more than just a nod from the FIA. The teams are asking for a detailed roadmap of Andretti’s potential impact on F1’s future. Until then, the paddock remains in a holding pattern, waiting for the next move in this high-stakes motorsport chess game. Keep your eyes peeled and your engines ready, F1 fans – this race is far from over.