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Honda shows interest in F1 return

ESPN Staff
October 10, 2012 « Grosjean must cool down - Boullier | Korea DRS zone lengthened »
Honda last raced in F1 in 2008 © Sutton Images
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Honda has aspirations to return to Formula One if the regulations present the right kind of opportunity for the Japanese car giant.

Honda last pulled out of the sport in 2008 amid the global economic turndown, aiding Ross Brawn in a management buyout of its team which is now run by Mercedes. However, Honda's head of R&D Yoshiharu Yamamoto has now said his company is continually assessing the future regulations of F1 to see if a return makes sense.

"On a personal level I love racing, but there is a lot involved when you are in F1 - it is the very top of auto racing and that requires a large commitment," Yamamoto told Autocar. "But it is true that we do look up at those races and hope that one day we can take part again.

"I do not personally think we can just go straight back immediately, but there is potential for the rules to change and attract us. I follow the rules, certainly, and if they present an opportunity then it would be nice to go back."

According to Autocar, Honda sees small capacity turbo-charged engines as the future for its road cars after years of developing high-revving naturally aspirated powertrains. In 2014 F1 is set to adopt 1.6-litre V6 turbos, adding to speculation that Honda could be eyeing a return.

However, Yamamoto thinks Honda should focus on winning in the World Touring Car Championship first, after developing a turbocharged Civic to compete in the series this year.

"This is my personal view - not that of Honda - but I feel the first thing we must do is win in the WTCC, and then perhaps we can look further afield," he added.