If reports on the BBC are to be taken as fact, Lotus bosses Tony Fernandes and Mike Gascoyne held secret talks with Renault before the race at the British GP regarding engine supply for 2011. The Beeb also report that Lotus and Renault are keen for this to happen and intimate that there is a tie in with Group Lotus regarding Renault supplying engines for their road car line up. Currently Lotus use exclusively Toyota supplied engines in all of their cars however supplies of the 1.8l 2ZZ used in the Elise/Exige and 2Eleven have dried up, perhaps Group Lotus are shopping around too however recent moves at the car factory have seen Cosworth tuning the 3.5l V6 Toyota engine used in the Evora Cup racer.
Lotus have previously had a relationship with Renault from 1983 to 1986 supplying the initial iteration of the team with engines for cars driven by Senna and Mansell bringing success with 5 GP victories. Obviously the current engine is hugely successful with Webber and Vettel dominating the season in the Renault powered Red Bull cars, Renault have also stated that they have room in their manufacturing for an extra team so a move from Cosworth to Renault is looking likely and a good thing to move them closer, if not in front of the more established teams.
Mike Gascoyne has denied any move away from Cosworth as they are in a contract with the Northampton based engine supplier. There is also talk of Lotus Racing being far along in discussions with Classic Team Lotus and presumably David Hunt to rebrand the team to ‘Team Lotus’ as they were under founder Colin Chapmans’ reign.
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