The Formula 1 world has often remarked at how much more efficient the Mercedes or even Ferrari ecosystem is with chassis and engine development working abreast and in concert with each other and given the performance results, that would be hard to argue with.
It was often cited as one of the main reasons for the recent domination of Mercedes. With this thought in hand, could a partnership or joint venture challenge a completely internal ecosystem in F1?
In particular, could a superior chassis maker in Red Bull Racing combine with a smaller car manufacturer called Aston Martin as well as a smaller engine maker in the form of Cosworth to challenge the might of Mercedes? That’s what is being discussed and I am curious if the three entities can create a R&D and investment structure to compete with the likes of Mercedes, Renault and Ferrari. Cosworth Bruce Wood said:
“We would like to work with that partnership,” Wood said.
“We’ve done a lot of work with Aston for many years, we’re working very closely with Red Bull and the team for the Valkyrie [hypercar], so there’s a certain logic to it.
“Aston have been very clear that they want to be doing something more than just badging someone else’s engine.
“They also don’t aspire to designing it all themselves, so there’s a natural fit there and certainly that’s where some of those discussions are happening.
“Aston and Red Bull have a very strong relationship, so there’s definitely a desire to do something together there.”
Now, this concept is more than just Red Bull’s F1 program. It is in concert with Aston’s road cars etc. How effective could this tie-up be, though? Could Cosworth and Aston team to create a competitive engine for Red Bull and when coupled with their chassis take on Mercedes?
The fact is, Red Bull are going to have to do something as their Renault engine supply contract is up at the end of this season. Many suspect they will move to Honda as a stop-gap measure until the 2021 regulations are set and then perhaps move to an Aston/Cosworth creation. That may only happen if the regulations are changed to allow for a more affordable power unit though. Aston has made that clear in the past.
I’m curious to see if a privateer program or joint venture could take the battle to Mercedes. A lot of that will hinge on Ross Brawn and the FIA getting the right regulation set for 2021.
Hat Tip: Autosport