Three decades on and Alfa returns to F1

  • Three decades on and Alfa returns to F1

Three decades on and Alfa returns to F1

The cars will sport the distinctive colours and logo of Alfa Romeo and will be powered by 2018 Ferrari power units.

The partnership is being billed as "strategic, commercial and technological cooperation between Alfa Romeo and the Sauber F1 Team".

The Alfa Romeo situation is similar to what exists between Aston Martin and Red Bull.

The partnership is technical as well as commercial, the companies said in a statement, and has already been agreed for more than one year.

Ferrari, whose main sponsor Santander pulled out of both their eight-year team sponsorship as well as their grand prix title and trackside branding for the last 11 years on Wednesday, have been vocal in their threat to pull out of F1 themselves if the proposed 2021 engine regulations aren't altered to favour their approach to the sport.

Alfa Romeo was once the most competitive marque on the F1 grid, and apart from the Indianapolis 500 (which was included in the Formula One Championship for its first 10 years but was rarely contested by the European teams), Alfa Romeo won the first nine races in Formula One history, taking the first two drivers and constructor titles.

Alfa Romeo is returning to Formula 1... but not quite in the way that you'd hope. Marchionne continued to say that the sharing of technology and know-how would be beneficial to the brand.

The move back into F1 has come after Alfa Romeo's introduction of crucial new production auto models, the Stelvio and Giulia, and looks set to be the next step in the brand's rejuvenation. "At the same time, Alfa Romeo fans will once again have the opportunity to support an automaker that is determined to begin writing an exciting new chapter in its unique, legendary sporting history".

Alfa then stopped Grand Prix racing for a decade but returned as an engine supplier in 1961.

However, the arrival of the Alfa Romeo partnership could see them strengthen their ties with Ferrari, with both of the Italian marques coming under the Fiat umbrella.

Meanwhile, Sauber Holding chairman Pascal Picci said that working with Alfa Romeo would help his team develop its technologies and engineering projects.