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You’ve heard rumours time and time again, but a recent engagement by Auto Express suggests that the possibility of Ingolstadt’s four rings foraying into Formula One is stronger than ever.

Amidst speculations of a partnership with Red Bull, Audi CEO Rupert Stadler has told the UK magazine that Formula One remains an option for the carmaker, according to a report by Automotive News Europe. It is rumoured that Red Bull is trying to get Audi in to replace current engine provider Renault.

“We’re already well stuffed with successful motorsport projects. But with F1, wait and see. It’s an option for Audi. Not at this moment, perhaps. But it is still an option,” Stadler told Auto Express.

24h Le Mans 2014

Moreover, Ferdinand Piech’s departure as Volkswagen Group chairman has fuelled talk – Piech was seen as being strongly against Formula One. Throw in Porsche’s return to Le Mans as a works team and you can appreciate how rumours of brand repositioning within the Group are rife.

“If we don’t have a competitive engine in the near future, then either Audi is coming or we are out,” Red Bull motorsport consultant Helmut Marko has told the BBC. “The VW Group first has to sort out… who will run the brand of VW, and when they have sorted all these things maybe then they can think about what they are doing in motorsport.”

According to Auto Express, Audi is rumoured to be considering abandoning the German Touring Car Championship (DTM) and Le Mans – despite its successes – and it could combine both budgets with Red Bull sponsorship to go into Formula One, leaving the two aforementioned series to Porsche.