An announcement from the Volkswagen Group regarding an entry into Formula 1 is expected to be made imminently.
Rumours of a potential F1 entry from the motoring giant have circulated for years, but these rumours have gathered momentum in recent months, with the sport taking a new direction in terms a budget cap and a planned change in engine formula for 2026.
According to Business Insider, a top-level meeting at the Volkswagen Group next week is set to green-light two of their brands entering F1.
The report suggests that Audi will make an offer to purchase the McLaren team outright, with Porsche intending to establish a long-term deal with Red Bull.
Audi letter reveals the state of play
Last December, a letter sent by Audi CEO Markus Duesmann and Oliver Hoffmann from the brand's Board of Management to former FIA President Jean Todt was revealed by RacingNews365.com.
This letter was distributed to members of the World Motor Sport Council at their 15 December meeting, and indicated that Audi were ready to put pen to paper on a potential F1 entry in light of the "Regulation Framework Issue 6" being passed by the council.
This framework refers to the future power unit regulations, which have been outlined with the aim of using 100 per cent sustainable fuels, and a shift of focus to more electrical power. The intent is also to significantly reduce costs, both for existing and new manufacturers.
The letter indicated that they hoped to confirm entry in "early 2022".
Viewed by others:
Domenicali hints an announcement is imminent
Having verified the veracity of the Audi letter, and with the reports of the VW Group meeting next week, RacingNews365.com approached F1 CEO Stefano Domenicali for comment over the Bahrain Grand Prix weekend.
Domenicali appeared to make little effort to hide that events with Audi and Porsche are bubbling under the surface, and simply said: "Stay tuned, and you will see soon!"
F1 Podcast: Can anyone stop the Verstappen/Leclerc show?
RacingNews365.com F1 journalists Dieter Rencken,
Mike Seymour, and Thomas Maher look back over the Saudi Arabia Grand Prix in Jeddah, which was won in dramatic fashion by Red Bull's Max Verstappen.