Red Bull Racing could potentially use Honda engines next season after it emerged the two parties have held discussions about a collaboration ahead of the United States Grand Prix.
The latest twist in the saga over which engines Red Bull Racing could use in 2016 after severing its ties with Renault, though it appears a deal with Ferrari and Mercedes seems unlikely now after a breakdown in negotiations, Honda was never readily considered an option either due to its struggles in 2015 and much rumoured 'exclusivity' to McLaren.
However, media reports have since raised the possibility of Red Bull joining the Honda roster as a means of pushing development of the engine, even if the Japanese firm has repeatedly stated it has no plans to push resources with another team.
Speaking to the media at the United States Grand Prix, Christian Horner was once more coy on the speculation, but admits 'discussion is going on'
“I think, as we sit here, obviously there is a great deal of speculation and interest as to what the engine supply we're going to have for next year is, and, as we sit here now, nothing is fixed but there is a lot of discussion going on in the background and hopefully there will be a resolution fairly soon.
The rumours come despite McLaren's apparent exclusive deal with Honda, which is believed to manifest in the use of a veto. However, Eric Boullier was unwilling to comment.
“It's difficult to comment other than to say that we are happy with our partnership with Honda and this is what we wanted to achieve, to be a works team with an OEM, and I can't comment, obviously, on what Christian said or whatever happens.
“There is a lot of discussion going on behind the scenes. McLaren and Honda are official partners and obviously there is due respect and understanding from both parties.”
revealed earlier this year that Honda has been preparing itself to potentially supply multiple teams
with the construction of a new factory in Milton Keynes, the location of Red Bull Racing's base too.