Ranking F1’s Manufacturers


This topic contains 15 replies, has 8 voices, and was last updated by  Max Jacobson 3 years, 9 months ago.

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    Lucas Wilson

    There has been a lot of talk recently about how Mercedes are looking like they could win the championship next year and even beyond. If they were to win this year, where would this put them on the list of the worst and greatest car manufacturers to compete in F1?. If I have forgotten some, please tell me. Thus current list is for manufactuers who have competed in the sport since 1996, although I will only include the results of the years when they were actively making road cars.

    10. Caterham (2012-present)

    Tony Fernandes owns Caterham, so technically its a factory effort, not that you would realise as the team have scored zero points in the two years they have been running under the Caterham guise.

    9. Spyker (2007)

    1 year in control of the Silverstone based team in 2007 by the Dutch car maker Spyker saw it score just one point in a rain soaked Japanese GP.

    8. Jaguar (2000-2004)

    A very disappointing effort from what was basically a Ford works team. The team scored a total of 61 points over 5 years. Highlights included two third places, one at Monaco in 2001 and Italy 2002. The team was sold to Red Bull Racing, which has now won 4 championships from 2010-2013.

    7. Toyota (2002-2009)

    Toyota is a classic example of the fact that money does not always equal success. The team had been spending nearly half a billion pounds in some years and during their eight years in the sport only achieved a few podiums, but no wins, the Japansese giant withdrew at the end of 2009 due to the financial crises with its pride definitely hurt. In some ways it was a shame as their car for 2010 could have been a championship contender. Rumours suggest that Toyota may be one of the teams that could be the mysterious entrant in 2015, although this is probably highly unlikely.

    6. BMW

    After parting ways with Williams in 2005, the team bought the Sauber team in 2006, the team were very quick during some races, winning their only race in Canada 2008, a year in which they could have been championship contenders, instead they took the disicion to consentrate on their 2009 effort, which turned out to be a complete failure, they pulled out of the sport in the same year, with its former owner, Peter Sauber, re-buying the team for 2010.

    5. Honda

    Honda first entered F1 in 1964 after producing their first car 4 years before, the team had some success, winning two races before pulling the plug in 1969.
    Honda had previously provided engines for the BAR team from 2000-2005, in 2006 they took complete control of the team. The teams effort in 2006 was good, winning one race in 2006 in Hungary. Their efforts tailed of after this, the highlight of their 2008 season being a third place in the British GP. The team took the descion to focus on 2009, but the financial crises mean’t that the team pulled out, Ross Brawn saved the team, renaming it Brawn GP, winning both championships in 2009.

    4. Mercedes

    Following neatly on, after 2009 Mercedes purchased the team, the team had 2 seasons of little success before finally winning a race at the 2012 Chinese GP. The team had an even more successful 2013 season winning three races and getting many pole positions. The team looks to be strong contenders for 2014.

    3. McLaren

    During the production of the McLaren F1 (from 1992 to 1998) the team had a relatively bad run of success, generally being beaten by the Williams and Bennetton teams. Things started to turn around in 1997, with the team winning its only championship in manufacturer status in 1998. McLaren became a manufacturer again in 2011 with the production of the MP4-12C supercar. The team won many races in 2011-2012, they probably would have won the championship in 2012 had it not have been for unrealiability.

    2. Renault

    Possibly the only mainstream manufacturer to win in F1. They ran there first team from 1977 until 1985. They achieved great results, becoming the first team to ever win a race with a turbocharged car and almost winning the championship with Alain Prost in 1983.

    The French autogiant purchased the Bennetton team in 2000 and rebranded it Renault in 2002, the team had almost instant success winning their first race in Hungary 2003. With the team winning world constructor and world drivers championships in 2005 and 2006. The team was completely sold to Genii after their 2011 campaign.

    1. Ferrari

    Ferrari will probably always be the ultimate manufacturer. Cars and F1 for Ferrari have always been intimately tied together. They have been in every single F1 championship ever: 207 pole positions, 15 drivers championships and 16 constructors championships.



    Meh, manufacturer teams are to eager to quit when things don’t go their way. I’d rather have them developing engines. We need BMW back to supply Williams and take the fight to their rivals Mercedes that way, injecting some cash into the Williams team, at least it’s still cheaper than running their own team.

    Red Bull Racing Renault, Williams BMW and McLaren Honda sound a lot better than Mercedes and Toyota running entire treams do. Toyota quit and Mercedes will eventually. Renault can still use their part in the RBR succes story in commercials and everyone’s happy. Isn’t supplying engines making manufacturers a profit anyway?



    My top 10 would be;

    10. Honda
    9. Toyota
    8. BMW
    7. Maserati
    6. Alfa Romeo
    5. Cooper
    4. Mercedes
    3. Renault
    2. McLaren
    1. Ferrari



    I would only count the ones who make chassis and engines rather than Mclaren, Marussia, Caterham, Spyker et al.



    Calum makes a good point. It gets confusing looking at teams like McLaren in particular.

    But I also have difficulty ranking Renault. If I include their success as engine manufacturers they go higher, but if I marginalise that and focus on their works entries they would just go below Mercedes for me (whose spell in the ’50s was brief but so dominant, and they are once again a top team after a bit of mediocrity, whereas Renault have had similar success, similar lack of success, but no period of such dominance).

    Aston Martin
    Alfa Romeo

    So that’s my tentative list, although I don’t know whether to include Jaguar. They didn’t make their own engines, but then they’ve often used Ford or developments of Ford engines in their road cars anyway. Same with Lotus, although I decided to include them anyway in the end- they felt like too a big and important a team (and less of a branding exercise than Marussia, jaguar, Spyker etc.) not to, not even vaguely including their supposed current team though. I can’t believe nobody else has mentioned them at all.


    Lucas Wilson

    Yes, but you have remember that the McLaren F1 also ran BMW engines, which, for a time, the F1 team also ran.



    For me, in F1 terms, a manufacturer is a team making its own chassis AND engine (as well as road cars, obviously). So for the purposes of this ranking, McLaren is not included, as is Renault’s success as an engine (but not chassis) builder and supplier.

    1. Ferrari
    2. Renault
    3. Mercedes
    4. Alfa Romeo
    5. Maserati
    6. Honda
    7. BMW
    8. Porsche
    9. Toyota
    10. Jaguar



    So what about Lotus?



    @matt90 Lotus did not race in F1 with engines of their own construction (partnering with Ford, Renault, and Honda among others). So they are not F1 manufacturers for me.


    Force Maikel

    @full-throttle-f1 Caterham is not a factory team, you can only be regarded as such if you build your own chassis and build your own engine, something caterham doesn’t do.


    Lucas Wilson


    Its a fine line, the Lotus manufacturer raced up until the mid-90’s but didn’t make their own engines, neither did McLaren, but they are car manufacturers. If you go on the basis that a manufacturer has to produce their own engine and chassis, you’d get oddities such as the 1998 Arrows popping up, which by your definition, would be a factory team.


    Force Maikel

    @full-throttle-f1 Bad example because Arrows never was a car manufacturer of legal road cars, McLaren today is widely considered not to be a factory team even though they have a department that builds legal road cars.

    So let me redefine what makes a team a factory team in my own opinion (and many more I reckon): one needs to build legal road cars, one needs to build its own chassis and one needs to build its own engines. Examples of these are Ferrari, Mercedes, Renault, Honda, Alfa Romeo, Toyota, etc…

    But it’s a thin line teams like Lotus and Caterham or even Marussia for that matter are special. They are not privateers but nor are they real factory teams. It’s a hybrid of both worlds that doesn’t really have a specified name. Perhaps someone F1 fanatic can come up with one.


    Max Jacobson

    I would say, for the purposes of absolute accuracy and a definite defined judicial reference, to be defined as a manufacturer constructor you must:

    1 – Manufacture your own chassis

    2 – Manufacture your own engines (works partnerships such as McLaren-Honda do not count, nor do instances where said team are partnered with the same engine manufacturer who supplies their road car operations)

    3 – Have a full-scale production operation of road-legal cars (in which I would include the necessity to make your own engines)

    I would also reason that if the team name they are running under is a subsidiary company to a larger manufacturer (i.e Jaguar with Ford), it is acceptable to consider the larger manufcaturer’s engines as being produced by the manufacturer which the team runs under (i.e Ford engines can be counted as Jaguar engines, so Jaguar would be producing their own engines under the aforementioned point).


    Max Jacobson

    However, if applying the logic solely that a constructor simply has to be owned by an auto manufacturer and use their name, then the number of constructors increases I imagine quite drastically.



    I just struggle to consider a team as important and prominent- in both F1 and on the road- as Lotus not being a manufacturer, regardless of them not making their own F1 engines.

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