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TopGear.com.ph Philippine Car News - Honda firms up F1 return by putting up UK R&D center

Honda is shoring up its return to Formula 1 by announcing that it is putting up an engine R&D center within Mugen Euro's facility in Milton Keynes in the United Kingdom.

The new structure "will be the European frontline operation for Honda's F1 participation." It will also be the location where Honda will rebuild and maintain the power units developed at the Honda R&D center in Tochigi, Japan, and it will also serve as the base of its trackside support operations.

According to Honda, the UK is the ideal location to base its F1 operations in since many of the motorsport's suppliers are based in the country, and because seven of the 19 races will be run in Europe. In addition, the UK also acts as a global hub for the transportation of parts as well as team personnel. Honda hopes to have the facility operational by June 2014.

Honda's return to Formula 1 will be in partnership with McLaren, with the Japanese firm providing the power unit--including the engine and energy recovery system--from the 2015 season onward.

"With the confirmation of a new F1 operation base in UK, our preparation to join F1 has become more specific and concrete," said Honda R&D motorsports boss and senior managing officer and director Yasuhisa Arai. "To meet and exceed the expectations of our fans, we will accelerate our development to bring back the unique Honda engine sound onto the track."

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