There will be a third ‘works’ Formula One team on the 2016 grid after French manufacturer Renault confirmed their takeover of the Lotus F1 Team.
The announcement was made ten weeks after an initial letter of intent was signed between the two parties and with the Formula One season now over it was the perfect time for the deal to be confirmed.
The two company’s issued a joint statement on Thursday confirming the news, in announcing the deal, Renault Chairman and CEO Carlos Ghosn commented by saying:
Renault had two options: to come back at 100 percent or leave. After a detailed study, I have decided that Renault will be in Formula 1, starting 2016. The final details supplied by F1’s main stakeholders gave us the confidence to accept this new challenge. Our ambition is to win–even if it will take some time.
Renault believed that they were not getting the return on investment in terms of exposure as an engine supplier however that will not be an issue now as they return to a full works team.
The French manufacturer has been uninterrupted in Formula One for almost forty years and the company will announce further details of their return in the new year.
The news also means that the Lotus name which returned to F1 in 2012 will disappear. The Enstone outfit will field Pastor Maldonado and Jolyon Palmer under the Renault F1 Team.