Renault today confirmed that they will buy a controlling stake in Lotus. They announced that a letter of intent has been signed by them today and they’ll be taking over Lotus F1 team for 2016
This means that Renault would be returning as a full formula works team in 2016. The announcement is also expected to help Lotus’s cause when it returns for it’s final appearance in High Court regarding its insolvency battle with HMRC.
Renault previously owned the Enstone-based outfit from 2002 to 2009, during which it also won world championship doubles with Fernando Alonso in 2005 and 2006.
“Renault Group and Gravity Motorsports S.a.r.l., an affiliate of Genii Capital SA, are pleased to announce the signature of a letter of intent regarding the potential acquisition by Renault of a controlling stake in Lotus F1 Team Ltd,” Renault said in a statement.
“The signature of this Letter of Intent marks Renault’s first step towards the project of a Renault Formula 1 team from the 2016 racing season thereby extending 38 years of commitment of the brand to the world’s premier motorsport championship series.
“Renault Group and Gravity will work together in the coming weeks to eventually turn this initial undertaking into a definitive transaction provided all terms and conditions are met between them and other interested parties.”
The announcement comes after Lotus had spent the Japanese GP weekend locked out of their team hospitality unit, reportedly because of unpaid bill from last year’s race, and F1 boss had to step in to feed their mechanics and staff.