Alpine shuts the door on Andretti engine deal, for now

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Alpine has confirmed that no discussions have taken place with Andretti regarding a potential engine since Formula 1’s rejection of the US outfit’s entry into the sport for 2025/26.

Initially, Andretti had a pre-contract with Alpine to receive customer engines until their own Cadillac power unit - part of a partnership with General Motors - was ready in 2028.

But this option expired last summer, well before the FIA’s approval of Andretti’s entry last October.

However, Alpine team boss Bruno Famin admitted that talks could resume if Formula 1 confirmed the FIA’s green light and formally accepted Andretti into its ranks.

Unfortunately, Formula 1 flatly rejected last week the American team’s entry, although it conditionally left the door open for 2028.

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Speaking at the launch of Alpine’s 2024 car earlier this week at Enstone, Famin clarified that Renault had no intention of holding talks with Andretti regarding an engine supply deal until it gains a solid entry into the sport, whenever that may be.

“We had a pre-contract and after nothing happened,” said Famin.

“But it was, as I said before, it was related to the fact for Andretti to have this entry. For the time being, they have no entry.

“I read like you what FOM said about 2028. Let’s see what will be the future after that. Since FOM has given its answer, I have no discussion at all.”

Securing a power unit is just one chapter in Andretti's ongoing fight to become a part of the Formula 1 circus.

Expanding the grid to 11 teams has triggered anxieties among existing teams about diluting the already shared prize money pot.

This fear of smaller slices raises questions about the financial viability of welcoming new entries.

But beyond the financial concerns, Formula 1 expressed doubts about the value Andretti's bid would bring to the championship, even calling into question the recognition of the Andretti name.

Famin, when asked about his stance on new entrants at the A524 launch, echoed F1’s concerns about value addition.

“The view is still the same, it’s still unchanged,” he said. “We are very happy about having an 11th team in F1 if they bring real added value to the championship.

“And it was to Formula 1, to FOM, to evaluate what was the added value of that project. They made an analysis, they gave their answer.

“They are the ones who decide, and we are happy with that.

“I think it’s a case by case, it’s not a general position. Again, if Formula 1 says one day that an 11 team can bring a lot of added value to the championship, we will be very happy with that.”

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