Dec.5 (GMM) Honda Motor Company has confirmed that chief executive and president Takeo Fukui will front a media briefing on the topic of formula one in Tokyo on Friday afternoon (1.30pm Japanese time).
It is widely expected that the Japanese manufacturer will announce its withdrawal from the sport, and the closure of the Brackley (UK) based racing outfit should a buyer not be found in the coming weeks.
Spokespeople for the F1 team and the manufacturer would not confirm the speculation, both instead insisting more information will not be available until Fukui's briefing.
The unofficial news, however, led to shares in Honda Motor Company rising 0.2 per cent.
A financial analyst in Tokyo told the Bloomberg news agency: "A withdrawal by Honda would highlight just how awful the situation surrounding the auto industry is."
Staff of Honda's Brackley factory anonymously said their pay will be guaranteed only to the end of March, and sources at other formula one teams report they were flooded with enquiries about jobs as the news broke.
Sources close to Toyota, meanwhile, flatly denied suggestions it might follow Honda out of formula one, amid similar troubles for the Japanese manufacturer due to the economic downturn.