The combination of the continuing global economic recession and the in-fighting in Formula could soon cause another manufacturer to drop out of Formula One. Mercedes-Benz is considering whether to stay on F1 or follow BMW and Honda in withdrawing. Automakers are questioning the relevance and benefits of competing in F1, and the debate at Mercedes has been going on for several months although no decision has been made... yet. Perhaps if relevance is what Mercedes is looking for, they may go back to sports car racing which is increasingly embracing alternative drivetrains, particularly in the American Le Mans Series.

Mercedes-Benz owns 40 percent of the McLaren team and supplies the engines to both McLaren and Brawn. If Mercedes does decide to pull out, it's not clear how that would affect McLaren. McLaren was an F1 stalwart long before Mercedes came on board and could conceivably continue, perhaps using engines from Cosworth. Interestingly, the withdrawal of automakers could take F1 back to the 1970s when most of the teams were independent and aside from Ferrari and Renault most used Cosworth DFV V8s.

[Source: F1-Live]

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