For Prost, 2001 was a season of struggle as Alain Prost struggled to keep the team going. Initially, things looked quite promising after the catastrophic season, with the Diniz family becoming shareholders and bringing Parmalat sponsorship to the team. The AP04 also used a Ferrari engine and transmission, although the former was badged as an Acer in deference to the team's title sponsor. Prost was also one of several teams to opt for the new Michelin tyres on the French company's return to the sport. Alesi set fast times in winter testing, and the car appeared to show capable speed.
However, the team were mired in the midfield once the season began, fueling the speculation that the team had run an illegally fast car to attract sponsors. However, the cars were quite reliable, Alesi finishing all 12 races he had with the team. In the process he scored four precious points, but left the team for Jordan after the German GP to replace the sacked Heinz-Harald Frentzen. The German took over Alesi's role as team leader, but could not add to the points tally.
The team's driver problems were even more acute in the #23 car. Mazzacane was dropped after four races in favour of fellow-South American Luciano Burti, who had himself been dropped by Jaguar. Burti was quicker but also got involved in two enormous accidents which wrote off two chassis. The latter, at the Belgian GP put him out for the rest of the season. His replacement, Tomáš Enge, performed competently, but destroyed another car at the Japanese GP.
By the end of the season, however, the focus was firmly on Prost's impending collapse. Prost had fallen out with Diniz and his father, and the team was running out of money. Various deals to buy the team came to nought, and Prost did not survive into . The cars and other assets were bought by Phoenix Finance, which attempted to enter a team for 2002 and , but were barred from doing so by the FIA, as they had not bought Prost's entry or paid the mandatory bond for new teams.
The team eventually finished ninth in the Constructors' Championship, with four points.