Jun.7 (GMM/Inautonews.com) Details of Renault’s apparent interest in buying back the Enstone based team known currently as Lotus are now emerging.
It has been rumoured for some time that, having sold the outfit to Gerard Lopez’s Genii company at the end of 2009, the French carmaker now wants to ramp its F1 profile back up with a return to full works status.
Lotus chief executive Matthew Carter played down the speculation in Canada.
“The last information I heard (in the media) was that we were going to be sold by the end of May but we’re still here and we’re still the same team,” he said.
“That’s as much as I can say.”
The end-of-May story was about a supposed self-imposed deadline for the conclusion of talks between Lotus and Renault, who have reportedly also looked into buying other F1 teams.
But the Spanish sports daily Marca is sure that Renault’s plans to buy back Lotus in time for the 2017 season remain on track.
The report said a new company has already been formed to find investors, featuring Renault’s traditional oil partner Total, and that an announcement could be looming as soon as the British grand prix early next month.
Lotus’ Carter said in Montreal: “I continue to say the same thing — the shareholders have told me that the company isn’t for sale.
“I think I’ve said in the press before that everything is sale for a certain price.
“I continue to reiterate that we signed a long-term (engine) contract with Mercedes-Benz and as far as we’re concerned we just continue down that route,” he added.