Truth be told, the last that anyone heard about Ford in the world of prominent Motor Racing was actually in the famous 2019 film titled Ford vs Ferrari, directed by James Mangold. The film was widely received and Ford’s legendary name was further celebrated for its tenacity and willingness to compete with such an iconic name in the realm of high-speed racing.
As a matter of fact, where it came to Formula 1, the last but biggest development from a Ford perspective was when the company sponsored Cosworth, which supplied F1 engines from the year 1996 until 2004. The only real Ford participation, so to speak, was when they competed in F1 under their subsidiary Jaguar.
But the biggest piece of development in Motorsport’s top flight as of the last few hours is that Ford have announced a return to the F1 grid. But it’s not Mercedes or any other side of that nature with which they have announced their F1 comeback.
It’s Red Bull with whom Ford are going to partner from the onset of the 2026 Formula 1 World Championship, a development that has caught the imagination of F1 fans, pundits and the racing nerds well and truly speaking.
A recent racing sport from popular publication The Race highlighted the development in greater detail capturing in no uncertain terms the excitement that the news generated:
Ford has been interested in a potential F1 programme for several months, based around the 2026 engine regulations – which feature “100% sustainable fuels”, according to F1, and an increase in the electrical component of the engine to almost 50%.
A collaboration with Red Bull Powertrains, set up to build the first in-house Red Bull F1 engine for 2026, offered a cost-effective route onto the grid.
Red Bull was open to partnering with a manufacturer and had discussions with Porsche and Honda about a 2026 project before Ford entered the frame.
It is expected to be announced on Friday that the two Red Bull teams, Red Bull Racing and AlphaTauri, will run engines branded as Fords in a deal that involves the US manufacturer offering funding and technical input in return for naming rights.
But that being said, if there’s hype at the moment surrounding the trending F1 news then it’s certainly down to the fact that Ford isn’t an ordinary name in the top echelons of motor racing; it is one of the most decorated engine manufacturers ever in Formula 1’s grand history.
To this date, engineering nerds talk intricately about the sheer power that was the Cosworth DFV, designed by Keith Duckworth and Mike Costin.
Historically speaking, the said engine powered the likes of Graham Hill and Jim Clark’s Lotus in the then 1967 Formula 1 World championship season. And rather interestingly, the famous Englishman, a legend of the sport, even put his Lotus 49 on pole position at Zandvoort.
Though one can’t say what might the Red Bull and Ford alliance yield come 2026, but truly speaking, if there’s a piece of development that all are talking about in this build up to yet another brand new F1 season then its this coming together of two distinguished entities in the world of racing.