The German manufacturer has used the Auto Shanghai event in China, that commenced on April 18 and runs through to the 27th, to provide an update on its progress.
Under the banner of ‘Audi goes Formula 1' and with its show car on display, Audi chairman Markus Duesmann has confirmed its first full hybrid power unit is scheduled to run on the test bench before the end of the year.
The company has so far gained what it claims have been “valuable insights in development” from a single-cylinder engine that has been tested at its Neuberg facility since the end of 2022.
That will allow it to run a full PU – comprising a combustion engine, electric motor, battery, and electronic control unit – later this year. The MGU-H will no longer be part of the system as of 2026.
Audi also states its “dynamic development simulator…will be brought up to Formula 1 standards and will further advance the development of the Audi power unit”.
At present, the Audi Formula Racing project has 260 specialists on board, recruited both internally from other areas of the company, as well as externally as it has employed personnel with “Formula 1 expertise”.
Its aim is that by the end of the year, the team will consist of more than 300 employees.
Audi to install additional F1 PU test rigs
Over the course of the year, its Competence Center Motorsport in Neuburg will also be expanded for the F1 project.
From the second half of the year, additional test rigs for PU development will be installed in a new building that is not due to be completed until early 2024.
Audi claims, however, “a modular design will allow the state-of-the-art test rigs to be put into operation” prior to the building's completion.
Speaking at the Auto Shanghai show, Duesmann said: “Motorsport is an integral part of our DNA.
“We are convinced that our Formula 1 commitment will strengthen Audi's sporting focus. The racing series is continuously increasing its global reach, especially among young target groups and in our most important sales market – China.”
Oliver Hoffmann, a board of management member for technical development at Audi, added: “The Audi Formula 1 project has really taken off in recent months.