Honda is to base its European Formula 1 racing operation in Milton Keynes, UK from June next year in order to continue work on its 2015 season F1 engine.
The company is developing the new engine under a joint programme with McLaren. McLaren currently uses engines from Mercedes-benz. Honda claims it has just fired up the new engine. Red Bull racing is also located in Milton Keynes.
Manabu Nishimae, president of Honda Motor Europe Ltd, commented, "It's exciting to hear the cry of our new born Formula One engine for the first time. Our engineers are working hard to develop the engine and we are all looking forward to the start of the 2015 season."
Honda will be in charge of development, manufacture and supply of the power unit, including the engine and energy recovery system, while McLaren will be responsible for development and manufacture of the chassis, as well as the management of the new team, McLaren Honda.
From 2014, new F1 regulations require the introduction of a 1.6 litre direct injection turbocharged V6 engine with energy recovery systems. The opportunity to further develop these powertrain technologies through the challenge of racing is central to Honda's decision to participate in F1.
Throughout its history, Honda says it has passionately pursued improvements in the efficiency of the internal combustion engine and in more recent years, the development of pioneering energy management technologies such as hybrid systems.
Participation in Formula 1 under these new regulations will encourage even further technological progress in both these areas, according to the company. Plus, a new generation of Honda engineers can experience the challenges and thrills of operating at the pinnacle of motorsport. ■
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