Porsche has given us the biggest hint yet that it is looking into returning to F1 as an engine supplier under the proposed 2021 regulation changes.
The German manufacturer hasn’t been involved in F1 since it teamed up with Footwork in 1991. It was a complete disaster, with zero points scored.
In fact, Footwork failed to qualify for more than half the races and Porsche engines were binned off in favour of Cosworth mid-way through the season.
Since then, Porsche hasn’t been part of F1, although it has a presence on race weekends, as it pays for the Supercup series to be on the support programme.
Well, Porsche’s Lutz Meschke (deputy chairman of the executive board, and member of the board for finances and IT), visited the Italian GP and met with Ross Brown and the sport’s bosses.
Porsche has committed to a works Formula E team from 2019 onwards, but is pulling out of the FIA World Endurance Championship at the end of 2017, which would open up the opportunity for F1.
It has sent representatives to a number of meetings about the 2021 F1 engine rules and has been pleased with the direction being taken. Meschke told Motorsport.com:
“F1 could be one of the right places. As you know Formula E is very important for us now, and F1 is always a good topic to think about. And I think we are in quite good discussions regarding the new engine.”
Apparently, the current plan is for a simpler, less tech-focused twin-turbo V6 engine and that is attractive to Porsche, with Meschke saying it is a “good way to reach” the target of cutting costs.
He even confirmed that recent discussions are for being an engine supplier. Even if there isn’t a works team, it’d be great to see another big motoring brand with rich motorsport history in F1.