Le Mans Entry Not a Priority for Honda as Focus Shifts to F1 2026 Preparations

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Honda: Le Mans entry not the ‘priority’ amid F1 2026 preparations

In the previous year, Honda’s motorsport division, Honda Performance Development (HPD), was integrated into the global motorsport portfolio of the Japanese manufacturer. Subsequently, the division underwent a name change, becoming Honda Racing Corporation US.

As a result of this organizational restructuring, there is speculation that Honda may consider entering its Acura ARX-06 into the Le Mans race, a competition it has not been a part of since 2012.

Among the manufacturers participating in the IMSA SportsCar Championship GTP, Acura stands out as the only one without concurrent involvement in the World Endurance Championship. In contrast, manufacturers like BMW, Cadillac, Lamborghini, and Porsche are engaged in both series with their respective LMDh contenders.

Le Mans Entry Not a Priority for Honda as Focus Shifts to F1 2026 Preparations
Le Mans Entry Not a Priority for Honda as Focus Shifts to F1 2026 Preparations (Credits: Motorsport)

The IMSA team for Acura, Wayne Taylor Racing with Andretti, has expressed interest in participating in the prestigious French endurance event. Additionally, the former HPD division has shown eagerness to showcase the capabilities of its ARX-06 beyond North America.

However, such an endeavor requires approval from the broader Honda Racing Corporation (HRC) operation and the Honda board. Despite Acura’s victory at the Daytona 24 Hours in its inaugural attempt with an LMDh car last year, approval for Le Mans participation was not granted.

While Honda does not rule out the possibility of racing the ARX-06 under its own brand at Le Mans in the future, the current plan is on hold as HRC US expands its operations. Managing major programs in IndyCar and IMSA, HRC US is also involved in developing F1 engines for the Aston Martin team for the 2026 season.

Initiating efforts towards a potential entry into WEC or the Le Mans race is contingent on the F1 program’s ability to diversify into other projects.

At the Tokyo Auto Salon, HRC President Koji Watanabe stated to Motorsport.com Japan that there are currently “no plans” to participate in the 24-hour event. However, he emphasized that the possibility is not ruled out, describing it as a matter of priority.

Watanabe explained, “Primarily, we will continue with IndyCar given our limited manpower. In America, IMSA is popular, and our priority is to achieve success there.

The F1 venture, with a few US team members involved, will be integrated into our priorities, and considerations for a Le Mans entry will be deferred until stability is achieved in the F1 project.”

Acura will have two cars representing it in the IMSA’s GTP division this year, with WRTAndretti taking over the management of the second entry previously handled by Meyer Shank Racing.


By Park-Shin Jung

I am Park-Shin Jung. I am a professional content writer for cars.

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