Honda building European base for F1 return

McLaren Group Ltd. CEO Martin Whitmarsh speaks during a joint press conference with Honda Motor Co. President Takanobu Ito in Tokyo. (AP/Shizuo Kambayashi)

TOKYO — Honda Motor Co. says it will build a European racing base in Britain next year as the Japanese automaker prepares for a return to Formula One in 2015 as an engine supplier to McLaren.

The new facility, which will begin operating next June, will be in Milton Keynes and will be used to rebuild and maintain F1 power units developed at Honda’s research and development centre in Japan.

It will also be Honda’s operating base for other motorsports including the world touring car championship.

Honda announced in May it was returning to F1, reversing the decision made in 2008 to pull out of the expensive series due to the effects of the global financial crisis.

Honda was an entrant, constructor and engine supplier in F1 from 1964 to 2008.

When submitting content, please abide by our submission guidelines, and avoid posting profanity, personal attacks or harassment. Should you violate our submissions guidelines, we reserve the right to remove your comments and block your account. Sportsnet reserves the right to close a story’s comment section at any time.