When BMW announced their retirement from Formula 1 in 2009, it left BMW and F1 fans with the feeling that the Motorsport division has yet to achieved its potential. Looking in retrospective, the decision to leave the F1 ring was the right decision for the brand, on the eve of the world financial crisis and decreasing popularity of the most exciting racing championship in the world.
Over the years, BMW has constantly denied any rumors around an F1 comeback while reinforcing their support for the more spectacular DTM championship.
BMW bought the Sauber private team ahead of the 2006 season, rebranding it BMW-Sauber and winning the 2008 Canadian grand prix. Now Sauber’s boss Monisha Kaltenborn says the team remains in contact with its former owner and works partner.
“We have always been in the midfield and for BMW (we) were a pretty good platform to enter as the majority owner,” she is quoted by Germany’s motorsport-magazin.
She explained that, even in the works days, the number of BMW-specific staff at Hinwil could be counted on a hand or two.
“This shows that if we have the right type of financing, we can make a huge leap forwards,” said Kaltenborn. “But of course you need a little more to go all the way forward.”
She is not even ruling out a return to F1 for BMW one day.
“They know us personally very well and we have good contacts with them. They know what they want and so it makes no sense to try to persuade them. We’ll see,” said Kaltenborn.