Formula 1

Andretti still working on F1 car, doesn't accept rejection

by Scott Mitchell-Malm
2 min read

The would-be Andretti Formula 1 team backed by General Motors will keep preparing for a prospective entry as it “strongly disagrees” with its rejection by the commercial rights holder.

F1 declared on Wednesday that the Andretti Formula Racing application – which would run under the Andretti Cadillac name – “should not be successful”, despite Andretti previously getting a green light from the FIA.

The detailed F1 review of Andretti’s bid raised several concerns - including over the team’s potential competitiveness, its engine arrangement, and the value Andretti would bring to the championship.

Stake

Specifically, F1 raised a concern that Andretti wanted to enter in 2025 with a car built to one set of rules while also designing a new one to completely different regulations in 2026 – which F1 said “gives us reason to question their understanding of the scope of the challenge involved”.

F1 also said that Andretti, which has won in various categories including IndyCar and Formula E and is partnering with an established sportscar manufacturer, would be taking on a challenge it has “not faced in any other formula or discipline in which it has previously competed” and “would not be a competitive participant” with a short-term engine supply.

While not addressing any of F1’s specific points raised in an extensive statement, Andretti Cadillac has issued a response saying it has reviewed the information and “strongly disagrees with its contents”.

“Andretti and Cadillac are two successful global motorsports organisations committed to placing a genuine American works team in F1, competing alongside the world’s best,” it said.

“We are proud of the significant progress we have already made on developing a highly competitive car and power unit with an experienced team behind it, and our work continues at pace.”

Andretti has had a model built to the current ruleset in a windtunnel as part of extensive work undertaken in the expectation it would be granted an entry.

It has also hired a significant number of staff including ex-Renault man Nick Chester as technical director.

The fact Andretti Cadillac will continue its work “at pace” is an obvious indication it does not see F1’s rejection as the end of the matter.

Andretti F1

It is widely believed that F1’s decision will be challenged, although Andretti has not yet said if it will actually take legal action.

One factor to consider is that F1 did at least indicate that it “would look differently” should Andretti apply for an entry for 2028 with a General Motors engine – a reference to GM’s announcement last year it would build its own F1 power unit for this entry.

However, that seemed contingent on Andretti Cadillac joining the grid as requested for 2025, and a short-term customer engine deal being struck in the interim.

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