The Alfa Romeo name will return to Formula 1 in 2018, with the Sauber F1 team having secured a title-sponsorship deal with the manufacturer. The team will now be rebranded "Alfa Romeo Sauber F1". The multi-year technical and commercial deal with Alfa Romeo sees the Italian manufacturer's return to Formula 1 after 30 years away from the sport.
Alfa Romeo name to return to Formula 1 with Sauber F1 in 2018
It has been reported that the Alfa Romeo Sauber F1 team will use Ferrari power units for the 2018 season, but the car will be branded Alfa Romeo, thanks to the newly-Ssigned partnership.
Alfa Romeo has a rich history in the sport, having made its debut in F1 in 1950, and having also won the inaugural title with Giuseppe 'Nino' Farina. The marque was last seen in F1 in the 1988 season.
It is believed that the newly formed Alfa Romeo Sauber F1 team will now be a Ferrari B team, functioning in the same way that Red Bull and Toro Rosso function. It will also help the Ferrari Driver Academy programme, with drivers Charles Leclerc and Antonio Giovinazzi both linked to a seat with the team for the 2018 season.
"This agreement with the Sauber F1 Team is a significant step in the reshaping of the Alfa Romeo brand, which will return to Formula 1 after an absence of more than 30 years," said Sergio Marchionne, CEO Fiat Chrysler Automobiles. Marchionne continued to say that the sharing of technology and know-how would be beneficial to the brand. "The Alfa Romeo engineers and technicians, who have already demonstrated their capabilities with the newly-launched models, Giulia and Stelvio, will have the opportunity to make that experience available to the Sauber F1 Team," he continued.
Pascal Picci, Chairman of Sauber Holding AG, said, "We are very pleased to welcome Alfa Romeo to the Sauber F1 Team. Alfa Romeo has a long history of success in Grand Prix racing, and we are very proud that this internationally renowned company has chosen to work with us for its return to the pinnacle of motorsport."