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Audi reportedly close to securing McLaren stake in huge deal

Audi could soon have a presence in Formula 1 after making and raising a bid to buy into the McLaren team, according to reports.

Ricciardo Norris Saudi
To news overview © McLaren

Audi are pushing on with a bid to secure a stake in the McLaren Formula 1 team, and have recently raised their offer, according to reports in the German media.

Volkswagen Group brands Audi and Porsche have both been heavily linked with Formula 1 in recent times, and the rumours have only gathered pace amid the sport's recently-introduced budget cap and planned engine formula for 2026.

Back in December, RacingNews365.com revealed a letter from Audi bosses to former FIA President Jean Todt and F1 CEO Stefano Domenicali, which stated that the brand was almost ready to commit to an entry.

Now, German automotive newspaper Automobilwoche reports that Audi are offering 650 million euros - up from 450m - to land an initial stake in McLaren's F1 outfit, before potentially investing in the wider brand.

The report added that Audi and McLaren chiefs could sign a letter of intent as early as this week, with the Volkswagen Group's supervisory board then set to discuss the proposed deal later in the month.

McLaren previously shot down Audi rumours

In November, McLaren moved to deny a "wholly inaccurate" report that Audi had completed a takeover of their full operation.

"McLaren's technology strategy has always involved ongoing discussions and collaboration with relevant partners and suppliers, including other carmakers, however, there has been no change in the ownership structure of the McLaren Group," read part of the statement.

However, fresh talk of Audi and Porsche being cleared by Volkswagen to enter F1 emerged last week, with reports suggesting that Audi would make an offer to purchase the McLaren team outright and that Porsche intend to establish a long-term deal with Red Bull.

When approached by RacingNews365.com for a reaction to the Automobilwoche report, a McLaren spokesperson said there was "nothing to update".

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