Lotus could be set to switch from Renault to Mercedes power in 2015, well placed sources have confirmed.
While the two parties have an ongoing contract inevitably there has been some tension between Lotus and Renault this year. Lotus has been late with payments to the French manufacturer over the past couple of seasons, while the reliability and performance problems associated with the power unit have proved frustrating to the team.
Although the Enstone operation has an association with Renault dating back to the Benetton days of 1995, a fresh start with Mercedes would have obvious appeal. It would also go some way to guaranteeing an improvement in form, which would encourage sponsors – including those of Pastor Maldonado – to stay loyal.
Mercedes meanwhile will have the capacity to supply another team following the departure of McLaren to Honda next season. However, Stuttgart will no doubt demand suitable financial guarantees from Lotus, in the form of payment up front. There is also the question of whether the Lotus and Mercedes names are compatible from a marketing point of view.
No one know how good the McLaren-Honda package will be but the prospect of Lotus joining Williams and Force India in the Mercedes camp will not be an encouraging one for the likes of Fernando Alonso and Sebastian Vettel…
6 responses to “Could Lotus switch to Mercedes power from 2015?”
Your last paragraph is key to it all. Can Lotus afford the switch? And yes, they’re also in the position of answering ‘can we afford not to switch to Mercedes?
Adam, when F-1 made the switch from V10 to V8’s, changes were allowed by the FiA to assure parity. Won’t the FiA allow this to happen again, or are the power unit suppliers completely locked into their circumstances by the regulations that Renault and Ferrari cannot do anything to improve their situation? I can see that the die is certainly cast for this year, but is there no room for 2015? I cannot imagine the FiA standing by and let Renault and the Scuderia founder the way Cosworth did.
Will Mercedes be the next Cosworth?
Guess that means the prospect of a return to F1 as a manufacturer has been put fully to bed now. Renault have more nous then to jump aboard the travesty that the genii have wrought.
If Mercedes wants to pick up the financial slack of McLaren leaving, this may be the only option….I cant see them supply Red Bull,
Even if the Mercedes brand and power unit will make enough right now to attract or make stay a few sponsors, i’m not sure what will be PDVSA position by season’s end. Venezuela is in a highly critical situation, although one of the main oil producers in the world, the country due a very very bad government is facing high shortage of food and basic products, inflation forecast on +70%, social and political division, repression and the imposition of a cuban model of government. The currency exchange is controlled by the government and until a few months ago you could have gone to jail for trade a few bucks with a friend. PDVSA has been the petty cash of the Govt to pay for social programs, buy food among other things which in reality has been schemes to steal money and they subsidized petrol on levels you can’t imagine, basically with one thank in your country, you can fill for more than a year here, it’s absurd. 30% of oil production is sent to china to pay deb, another 30 to 40% is sent to cuba and the caribbean countries at preferencial prices in order to get political support, so in conclusion what PDVSA’s hast to market next year and sponsor a crash only driver?
Interesting information! Thanks