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New F1 Fuel: Cars Will Run on 100% Sustainable Formula by 2026

Last Updated: January 11, 2024
All the details on Formula 1’s latest sustainability news as it hopes to become a net-zero carbon producer by 2030.

We’re firmly rooted in Formula 1 auto racing‘s turbo-hybrid era. But the innovations don’t stop with a punchy 1.6-liter V6 purring in tandem with a sophisticated electric motor or a cheeky DRS wing.

This week, Formula 1 announced a new step in its march toward reducing the sport’s carbon footprint, and the news is something even more fundamental that the cars’ power units themselves.

In 2026, get ready for a new era for F1 fuel featuring a synthetic formula with a chemical makeup that’s 100% renewable/sustainable. It promises to be a key part of the racing competition’s goal of becoming a net-zero carbon producer by 2030.

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The new fuel is expected to accompany the rollout of next-generation Formula 1 powertrain design standards as well.

So, first thing’s first: What fuel do F1 cars use right now? The answer is E10, so named due to 10% of its formula consisting of ethanol, a renewable/sustainable compound produced from plants like corn. The fully sustainable version won’t simply be “E100” — we don’t have full details on the new recipe as of yet — but Formula 1 has confirmed that it’s actively working with Saudi-based energy company Aramco and other industry leaders to develop the new F1 fuel in time for a launch in fewer than four years’ time.

The news comes as Formula 1 continues its broader push toward sustainability across its operations, including:

  • Converting F1’s offices to run entirely on renewable/sustainable energy sources, a milestone that’s already been achieved
  • Emphasizing remote race broadcast coverage rather than on-site to save on shipping and transportation costs
  • Updating the design of freight containers to enable the use of more fuel-efficient air transport methods

That’s a series of reasonable goals — but let’s hope that F1’s porpoising problems don’t remain a fact of life straight on through 2026.

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About The Author
Sam Dunn
Sam Dunn
Sam Dunn is the Managing Editor of Boardroom. Before joining the team, he was an editor and multimedia talent for several sports and culture verticals at Minute Media and an editor, reporter, and site manager at SB Nation. A specialist in content strategy, copywriting, and SEO, he has additionally worked as a digital consultant in the corporate services, retail, and tech industries. He cannot be expected to be impartial on any matter regarding the Florida Gators or Atlanta Braves. Follow him on Twitter @RealFakeSamDunn.