Why did Porsche leave F1?
Porsche decided to leave Formula One because of financial reasons.
Joachim Bonnier in Porsche 718-2, 1960 GP Niemiec
Formula 1 has been entertaining fans since the 1950s and has, over the years, become the premier motorsport championship in the world. The glitz and glam around F1 are on a whole another level, and it is almost every driver’s dream to race in the competition. The sport has evolved massively since its inception, and today, many well-renowned automobile brands are trying their best to get into the sport.
While many brands are fighting to get into F1 today, there was a time when a global brand like Porsche decided to make an abrupt exit from the sport. Porsche won its only F1 race in 1962, the French Grand Prix, and kept on racing its old cars in the sport until 1964, but because of the high F1 costs and the acquisition of the Reutter factory, they decided that it was in the best interest of the company to leave the sport for good.
One other reason for Porsche’s departure from the pinnacle of motor racing was that Porsche’s Volkswagen and German branches had no interest in the sport back then, as they deemed the racing category as being too far away from road cars. These are the reasons why Porsche decided to leave F1. Had they stuck around, who knows, they might have become a prominent name in the sport.
Moreover, one more reason could be that in the 1960s, F1 was still in its early years and was not a global sport; it was popular only among European countries. This could be one factor that might have played a part in Porsche’s decision to leave F1 and not return.
Discover: What gas is in F1 wheels?
Porsche’s Legacy in Motorsports
Porsche, during their time in F1, was never able to finish better than 3rd in the Constructors Championship. The team managed to achieve the feat in 1961 when it had good drivers like Jo Bonnier, Dan Gurney, Hans Herrmann, and, Edgar Barth in the garage. However, after the promising result, the team slipped to 5h in the Championship in the following season.
Porsche competed with several cars at the pinnacle of motor racing, but after 1961, it was never really able to get to grips with the demands of the sport. The team struggled its way until 1964 and then decided to call it quits. While Porsche is no longer a part of the pinnacle of motor racing, the hierarchy of the company was dwelling for many years on getting back in F1 by 2026 but ultimately decided to cancel their 2026 plans.
In the modern F1 world, there are many hoops that a potential team has got to jump through in order to get considered for a seat. Even after going through complicated procedures, there are no guarantees. Even if any potential outfit is able to cross all the hurdles successfully, they have to pay a huge sum that goes into the pockets of the 10 F1 teams.
In case you missed it: