Russell: Mercedes “very confident” for 2026 engine regulations

Jaden Diaz

George Russell believes that Mercedes expect to produce a highly competitive engine for the upcoming F1 regulations. It was roughly a decade ago that Mercedes produced an engine that was peerless to begin the hybrid era. Now, with the Silver Arrows unable to fight for wins, 2026 is an opportunity to return to the front.

As it stands, the next era of Formula 1 is still undefined. The aerodynamic regulations are still being figured out, with teams and drivers alike vocal about some of their concerns. In the next few months, more clarity should emerge on this front.

With that said, there is one aspect of the 2026 rule change that is already understood – the engines. With a record-breaking number of manufacturers set to field their own power units, this will be a key determinant in performance.

There are currently negligible differences between F1’s top three engines: Honda, Ferrari and Mercedes. The only power unit with a significant disadvantage is Renault, which gives up a few tenths per lap to its competitors.

However, in two years, this dynamic will almost certainly change. Reliability will again return to the forefront as teams grapple with a very different set of parameters. In addition to this, there will be a significant discrepancy in horsepower.


Speaking to the media last week, George Russell revealed his confidence in what the factory at Brixworth will produce:

“I mean, ordinarily, 2026 seems like a long time away. But in the world of Formula 1, it’s going to be here tomorrow, and the team are feeling really confident for this era.

“I think you know the experience the team have had, the success in 2014 with the new powertrain, and then obviously the time in Formula E, the work that was done with the Hypercar.

“There are a lot of individuals within HPP [Mercedes High Performance Powertrains] who have got so much experience with this future technology. I think that leaves us in a really great place to have a great engine.

“And the work Petronas are doing on the fuel as well, is looking really strong. So, on the engine side, I think we’re feeling very confident for that era.”

Of course, nobody can be sure which engine manufacturer will lead the way in 2026. With so many names in the equation, the only guarantee is that there will be clear winners and losers in just under two years’ time.

For Mercedes, the importance of nailing the new regulations is essential. After losing the 2021 drivers’ Championship in a controversial fashion, Toto Wolff’s team has failed to produce a car capable of fighting for the title.

Of course, experiencing a rough patch after almost a decade of dominance is not a disaster. However, with Lewis Hamilton leaving for Ferrari and the W15 underperforming, the Silver Arrows need a clean slate to re-establish themselves at the front.