Max Verstappen: Mercedes interest ‘nice to hear’ | No Red Bull Powertrains ‘panic’

Max Verstappen responds to Toto Wolff's interest in him and reports he is concerned about Red Bull's F1 engine project.

Max Verstappen (NLD) Red Bull Racing. Formula 1 World Championship, Rd 3, Australian Grand Prix, Albert Park, Melbourne,
Max Verstappen (NLD) Red Bull Racing. Formula 1 World Championship, Rd 3,…

Max Verstappen has admitted that Mercedes’ interest in signing him was “nice to hear” after Toto Wolff said he would “love” to lure the reigning F1 world champion from Red Bull.

The three-time world champion’s future has been the subject of intense debate and speculation amid turmoil at Red Bull following the controversy around team principal Christian Horner.

Additional reports of a power struggle within Red Bull have led to suggestions that Verstappen could quit Red Bull and join Mercedes to replace Lewis Hamilton, who is moving to Ferrari in 2025.

Mercedes team principal Wolff has already stated that he would be keen to sign Verstappen, saying “there is no team up and down the grid who wouldn't do handstands to have him in a car.”

When asked about Wolff’s recent comments ahead of the Australian Grand Prix, Verstappen replied: “It doesn’t have any impact on me of what I would do or whatever, but I mean, it’s always nice to hear that.

“But of course, Toto and I, we had our little moments, but that’s normal between two teams as well, battling, I guess, for challenges, but the respect has always been there.

“But yeah, from my side, it doesn’t change anything.”

The three-time world champion was then pushed about a potential timeline for him to move to Mercedes in the future.

“Any year!” was Verstappen’s tongue-in-cheek answer.

“No, I don’t know. I don’t know what after ’28 happens. I don’t know if I’m going to stay in F1 or if I’m going to continue, maybe sign a new deal. I don’t know that yet.”

Verstappen also denied suggestions that he is concerned about Red Bull’s in-house power unit project for 2026.

“I don’t really worry about that too much,” he insisted. “Of course, I’m in close contact also with Christian [Horner] about that. And the people working there, everyone’s working flat out.

“So, there’s no need to panic about that as well. And also, it’s still not 2026. And we know that it is a very big task. We don’t take that lightly.

“And, of course, with so many well-established engine manufacturers, we also don’t think it’s going to be easy to beat them.

“But we have a lot of good people working on it, on the project. And we’re very excited about it. So, time will tell, of course, where it’s going to be.”

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