Andretti Global and General Motors have announced plans to enter a new Formula 1 team in the coming years under the latter’s Cadillac brand.
Andretti revealed last February that it was planning to open an F1 operation in the future, and spent much of the 2022 season discussing the possibility of expanding the field with the existing 10 teams.
FIA president Mohammed Ben Sulayem revealed on Twitter earlier this week that he had asked his team to look at starting the process for expressions of interest from potential new F1 teams, marking a first step to expanding the grid.
In an announcement made on Thursday, Andretti and General Motors revealed their plan to enter an “all-American team” in response to the FIA’s call for expressions of interest as an Andretti Cadillac team.
“We are continuing to grow Andretti Global and its family of racing teams and always have our eyes on what’s next,” said Michael Andretti, the chairman and CEO of Andretti Global.
“I feel that we are well suited to be a new team for Formula 1 and can bring value to the series and our partners, and excitement for the fans.
“I’m proud to have GM and Cadillac alongside us as we pursue this goal. GM and Andretti share a legacy born out of the love of racing. We now have the opportunity to combine our motorsport passions and dedication to innovation to build a true American F1 bid.”
Andretti, the chairman and CEO of Andretti Global, would not be drawn on when the new team would be ready to join the grid, saying it would “depend on the expression of interest, how long that takes, and where we are at the time.”
“But we are going to be on-track when it all makes sense to be on-track,” he added.
The potential team would initially receive a power unit supply from another engine manufacturer, but both Andretti and Cadillac are set to offer technical support as part of a collaboration.
The team would operate chiefly out of the new Andretti Global headquarters that is under construction in Fishers, Indiana, due to start operations in 2025. A satellite facility would also operate out of Europe for the team, as well as aiding with Andretti’s other racing interests.
F1 has not had a new team since Haas joined the grid in 2016, but there is understood to be interest from a number of parties about joining the field in the future.
The process for Andretti and Cadillac to join the grid is one that requires the support of F1 itself and the current teams, only two of which have been publicly supportive of Andretti's plans amid concerns of the potential financial impact.
Any new team joining the F1 field is required to pay a $200 million fee as a dilution fund that is split between the current grid to make up for splitting the teams’ payouts with another entrant.
Since first discussing plans to join the F1 grid, Andretti has been vocal about wishing to field an American driver in one of its seats, namely Colton Herta, who races for Andretti Autosport in IndyCar.
Asked by Motorsport.com if the plan was still to hand Herta one of the seats, Andretti said: “We definitely have plans to have an American driver. I think you all know who is leading the pack on that one.
“Colton we have under contract right now in Indycar. We want to make this an all-American effort to make sure we have an American driver in the seat.”
Cadillac’s interest in Formula 1 follows an expansion of its racing operations in recent times to include an entry to the World Endurance Championship under the new LMDh regulations.
“Cadillac and F1 both have growing global appeal,” said Mark Reuss, the president of General Motors. “Our brand has a motorsports pedigree that’s more than a century in the making, and we would be proud to have the opportunity to bring our distinct American innovation and design to F1.”