Aston Martin: No name clash with Honda's Red Bull switch
Red Bull title sponsor Aston Martin says the team's switch to Honda engines in Formula 1 next year has caused no concerns about brand confusion.
After more than two years where the team's renaming of Renault engines to TAG Heuer has avoided having two car makers in its title, Aston Martin will now have to share space with Honda next season.
But although having two different car manufacturers in the title of the team may appear confusing to some, Aston Martin is adamant that there is no issue for it on this front.
Aston Martin CEO Andy Palmer told Motorsport.com: "Very clearly, the team name is Aston Martin Red Bull Racing and then of course the FIA adds the [engine] manufacturer name.
"But let's be brutally honest. While it was called TAG, everybody knew it was a Renault. And in that sense, the difference between whether it is a Renault or a Honda?
"Aston Martin has zero cross shopping with both brands. So we are completely indifferent to the name."
Palmer says that Aston Martin was consulted about the decision to switch to Honda for next year, and made it clear it was fully behind any move that could help the team be more competitive in the future.
"Look, if it was a Ferrari engine I would have a problem! And that would be a red line," he said.
"But our customers don't cross shop us with either Renault or Honda, and basically can I say that Honda is more of a problem than Renault covered up with the name of the TAG? I honestly don't think so.
"We've known about it for a while and we fundamentally agree with where Red Bull wanted to go. Let's be clear: we don't have a veto, we were simply part of the consultation process and that is part of the philosophy by which we go Formula 1 racing.
"We think it is generally better that experts in Formula 1 go racing than owning your own team.
"The criteria for us is a very simple one: which is do everything you can to win. And clearly the team felt that by going over from Renault to Honda, it is going to give them a better chance of winning. In that sense, I commend the decision."
Inside Renault's F1 Tour de France
New Territory: Who will win on the return of the French F1 Grand Prix?