Honda to base F1 operation in Milton Keynes
11 July 2013 – Honda is to have a UK base for its F1 operation ahead of its return to the sport with McLaren from 2015. The office will be located in the new engine research and development centre of Mugen Euro Co., Ltd. 2, where Honda plans to start operations from June 2014.
Whilst the development and manufacture of Honda’s F1 power units will take place at the R&D centre in Tochigi, Japan, Honda said it felt it was ‘important to establish a European facility to support its racing operation’.
“The new facility will be the European frontline operation for Honda’s F1 participation and will rebuild and maintain the power units developed at Honda R&D centre in Tochigi, Japan,” read a statement issued by Honda UK.
“Honda will also base its trackside support operations from this new European office.”
“The UK is an ideal location,” Honda added, “it is the home of McLaren, many F1 suppliers are UK based and with 7 of the 19 races taking place in Europe [in 2013], the UK acts as a global hub for the transportation of parts as well as team personnel.”
Yasuhisa Arai, senior managing officer and director, chief officer of motorsports, Honda R&D Co., Ltd. commented: “With the confirmation of a new F1 operation base in UK, our preparation to join F1 has become more specific and concrete. To meet and exceed the expectations of our fans, we will accelerate our development to bring back the unique Honda engine sound onto the track.”