Renault: No reason to delay changing Lotus name

Renault says there will be no delay in changing the name of the Lotus Formula 1 team for 2016, if its takeover of the outfit gets completed.

The French car manufacturer has been in talks for several months about purchasing the Enstone-based outfit so it can resurrect its works team.

It hopes to be in a position to confirm its plans around the time of the season-closing Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.

There had been speculation in recent weeks that Renault could keep the Lotus name for next year, because 2016 is likely to be transitional year for the team.

But Renault F1 managing director Cyril Abiteboul has made it clear that if the takeover happens then his company will apply to get the name changed immediately.

“It will be for 2016,” he told Motorsport.com. “There is no reason to wait. We know in terms of operation and performance that 2016, if we go for it, it will be a transition year.

“But there is no reason to wait in also building the marketing story, because even if the results on track are not great, there is a long old story and we cannot wait to tell that story.”

Approval process

For Renault to be granted the name change, it will require support from rival teams as well as approval from F1 supremo Bernie Ecclestone.

Abiteboul said he hoped that there would be no opposition, with rivals Marussia Manor also expected to apply for a name change too.

However, Abiteboul suggested that there could be some interesting branding associated with the makeover of his outfit.

“We know what we want,” said Abiteboul. “We have a strategy in terms of naming, and we know why we would be entering F1 and to promote which brand.

“Renault is a halo brand but there are other brands associated to that. But I will not say anything in relation to that because that will be part of the announcement.

“So we know what we want, and there has to be a process which we have discussed with the governing body. We have not started the process because it would have, I guess, to go through some form of commission.

"But it looks like we will not be the only ones to go through some form of discussion in relation to change of name, so I expect people will be pragmatic about this circumstance.”

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About this article
Series Formula 1
Teams Team Lotus
Article type Breaking news
Tags cyril abiteboul