Honda is worried about the knowledge and experience that rival F1 engine manufacturers will gain in 2014, feeling that it could put them on the back foot and at a disadvantage when they return to the sport in 2015.
The Japanese manufacturer last competed in F1 in 2008 as the Honda Racing F1 Team. They pulled out of the sport at the end of the year but announced earlier this season that they will supply McLaren with V6 Turbo power-units from 2015, having been enticed back to Formula 1 by the new regulations coming into force next season.
Honda’s chief officer of motorsports Yasuhisa Arai says the things that Mercedes, Ferrari and Renault will learn next season will allow them to make quicker progress when they arrive in 2015.
“There are both advantages and disadvantages of participating from 2014,” he told the FIA’s Auto magazine. “Many things will happen during the F1 season, and we are in a fortunate situation to be able to observe what will happen.
“However, as we are only able to observe, we cannot physically be at the track to see the problems. Other teams can improve on their problems and progress as the race goes on. How they will progress will be a mystery to us and our engineers must rely on our imaginations.”
Talking about the rekindling of their relationship with McLaren, he added: “We have had a great history together – 15 wins out of 16 races in 1988. But more important is the mutual respect we have for each other’s work ethic and processes. Also, we have the same mentality or feel when we pursue victory and that is very important.”
Honda released a preview of their V6 Turbo power-unit earlier this year which you can listen to here.
Image courtesy of Vodafone McLaren Mercedes