Renault would begrudgingly supply Red Bull teams with engines in 2022

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Renault will supply to both Red Bull teams in 2022 if no other solution is found, Cyril Abiteboul has confirmed.

On Friday, it was announced Honda would be pulling out of Formula 1 at the end of next season just seven years after returning with McLaren back in 2015.

As for Red Bull, their partnership began with the Japanese manufacturer first with Toro Rosso in 2018 before the senior team switched from Renault last season.

But now with Honda leaving, it has created the scenario where the less than best friends, shall we say, may have to work together again in 2022 because of a rule which requires the supplier with the fewest customers to produce engines to teams if they are without a deal.

“We know the regulations and we would comply with the regulations,” the Renault boss told Reuters. “I guess, at this point in time, that will be discussed if Red Bull fails to find a solution, which I really hope will not be the situation."

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Abiteboul did confirm no contact has yet been made by Red Bull following Honda's announcement, and the Frenchman is also pretty sure it won't come to the two sides having to reunite.

“I think so, but we need obviously to look at the sport," he said via on if it would be awkward for Renault and Red Bull to work together again. 

"I think we are still very far away from having to possibly cross that bridge. I can’t imagine that Red Bull would not have some plan in the background.

“Clearly they must have been aware of this, and Helmut [Marko] and Christian [Horner] are full of moves and solutions. I don’t expect that we will be their Plan A!”

Abite Horner Marko

As for Honda's departure from F1, which will leave the sport once again with just three engine manufacturers, Abiteboul wasn't that surprised.

“We know it’s always something that can happen,” he said. “I knew that they had to confirm their position after 2021, and now that was probably the time to do that.

"And maybe the lack of confirmation was already an indication because when I see how advanced we are already into the 2022 engine design I guess it’s de facto some form of orientation.”