Formula 1 set for Lotus vs Lotus battle next season

0 CommentsPrint E-mail shanghaidaily, December 9, 2010
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The Renault Formula One team will race as Lotus Renault GP next year under a long-term partnership with the Malaysian-owned sportscar company who will also become co-owners, both sides announced yesterday.

At the same time, French car company Renault has sold its remaining stake in the team to Genii Capital, already the majority shareholder.

"Group Lotus PLC will subsequently become a major equity partner in Lotus Renault GP, which it will co-own with Genii Capital," the team said in a statement.

Confusingly, unless there is a further name change by its opponents, Lotus Renault will be competing against the existing Team Lotus - also Malaysian-owned and also powered by Renault engines.

Both also plan to race in new black and gold liveries harking back to the glory days of the late 1970s when Colin Chapman's original Lotus team was winning races and championships.

Team Lotus, which made its debut this year as Lotus Racing and is owned by aviation entrepreneur Tony Fernandes, is at odds with the Lotus Group owned by carmaker Proton in a battle over the use of the brand.

Fernandes claims the rights to Chapman's 'Team Lotus' name, which has been kept separate from the car company of late.

The dispute is currently heading for the High Court in London, although the new season will be well under way before any hearing.

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