After Honda announced it was to withdraw from Formula One, the FIA has once again expressed its concerns over the costs involved in competing in the sport.
Honda bosses in Japan confirmed early today [Friday] that the Brackley-based Honda Racing F1 Team will be put up for sale, and will be closed down if no buyer can be found.
The move comes down to the current global financial issues, which have hit the motoring industry hard.
Honda has announced it will close its Swindon factory for 50 days in early 2009 due to slowing global demand, with new car sales down by a third in the UK alone. Meanwhile, US car giants GM, Ford and Chrysler are seeking a multi-billion dollar bailout from congress to reduce the risk of collapse.
Honda's withdrawal from F1 has led to FIA president Max Mosley sending a letter to the remaining teams explaining more about his spec-engine idea, with a exclusive talks now ongoing with Cosworth (See separate story HERE
), and a statement from the governing body said that the loss of a manufacturer team had shown how vital cost-cutting is to secure F1's future.
"The announcement of Honda's intended withdrawal from Formula One has confirmed the FIA's longstanding concern that the cost of competing in the World Championship is unsustainable," it read. "In the FIA's view, the global economic downturn has only exacerbated an already critical situation.
"As the guardians of the sport, the FIA is committed to working with the commercial rights holder and the remaining members of FOTA to ensure that Formula One becomes financially sustainable."