Red Bull Racing seals Aston Martin deal amid F1 engine intrigue

Formula One motor racing team Red Bull Racing has today (Monday) confirmed Aston Martin as its title sponsor as part of a wide-ranging agreement with the British sportscar marque.

The agreement, which was mooted earlier this month, will see the UK-based team retitled Aston Martin Red Bull Racing from the start of the 2018 season. The length of the deal was not disclosed.

The relationship between Aston Martin and the team began in 2016 after the two companies combined F1 technology and Aston Martin’s sports car design to produce a hypercar. The Aston Martin Valkyrie is set to be the first in a line of new products to be borne of this Innovation Partnership and will make its first run in 2018 before being delivered to customers in 2019.

Aston Martin branding has also featured on the 2016 and 2017 Red Bull car, and will feature prominently across the team from the start of the 2018 season.

The news of the deal comes with Aston Martin continuing to weigh up its options with regards to possibly becoming an engine manufacturer in F1. Red Bull’s engine supply is currently uncertain, with Renault expected to end its partnership following the 2018 campaign.

Aston Martin president and chief executive, Andy Palmer, said: “Title partnership is the next logical step for our Innovation Partnership with Red Bull Racing. We are enjoying the global brand awareness that a revitalised Formula One provides. 

“The power unit discussions (in Formula One) are of interest to us, but only if the circumstances are right. We are not about to enter an engine war with no restrictions in cost or dynamometer hours but we believe that if the FIA (International Automobile Federation) can create the right environment we would be interested in getting involved.”

An expanded technical partnership between the two parties will take the shape of a new Advanced Performance Centre at Red Bull’s Milton Keynes home. The new facility will house 110 Aston Martin design and engineering staff who will be working with their Red Bull Advanced Technologies counterparts to create the Valkyrie’s successors.

Red Bull has been without a title sponsor for the past two seasons after ending its partnership with Infiniti, the premium car brand of Japanese automotive manufacturer Nissan, at the end of the 2015 campaign.