Formula 1 bosses will meet on Monday to discuss Red Bull’s proposal to freeze engine development after 2022.

Red Bull is currently exploring alternative power unit solutions for the future following Honda’s decision to quit the sport at the end of next season, leaving both the Milton Keynes squad and sister team AlphaTauri seeking new engines for 2022.

The team has made it clear that its preferred option is to takeover Honda’s abandoned engine project, but Red Bull wants to bring forward the planned engine freeze from 2023 by a year to 2022 so it can continue to use the power units without needing to invest in developing the technology.

There are indications that the Red Bull owned teams would be willing to pull out of F1 altogether should its desired solution not be possible, although this would not be the first time Red Bull has threatened to quit F1.

The F1 Commission will discuss the matter of future engine rules further during a meeting held via video call on Monday.

While Mercedes has publicly stated that it would be in favour of such a move, rivals Ferrari believe finalising plans for F1’s 2026 engine regulations is the overarching issue that needs prioritising at this time.

"It is true that the engine [freeze] matter is one of the points of a big meeting, so I'm not sure we'll discuss it really at length," said Ferrari team principal Mattia Binotto after the Portuguese Grand Prix.

"But I think before starting discussing the freezing, more important is to start discussing 2026. What's the new technical format for the new power unit in the future? Where costs will be addressed? And where technology needs to be addressed?

"So I see that as a first priority, and so freezing is only a second priority to the discussion."

Speaking to Sky Sports during the Portuguese Grand Prix weekend, Red Bull chief Christian Horner stressed that a continuation of the Honda project is “really the only option that works” for his side.

“At the moment all focus is on plan A,” Horner explained. “Toto has made Mercedes’ case very clear. Obviously, Ferrari has got their own issues that they’re dealing with.

“Renault doesn’t really want to supply us. Their aspirations as a team obviously have changed. It’s inconvenient to supply a team like Red Bull. We’re not a standard customer team, we’re not a small team.”

Should an alternative plan not be reached, the FIA’s sporting regulations stipulate that Renault would be obliged to supply Red Bull and AlphaTauri engines in 2022 as the power unit manufacturer with the fewest customers.

 

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