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Lotus Type 72 - Click above for high-res image gallery

When BMW announced several weeks ago that it would be withdrawing from Formula One at the end of the 2009 season, the automaker left open the fate of the operations it bought from Peter Sauber. Since then, reports have indicated that the automaker has been evaluating possible buyers for the team.

According to Autocar, one of the possible suitors is Malaysian automaker Proton and the British sportscar maker it owns, Lotus. Team Lotus was a staple of F1 from 1958 until 1994 – winning seven Constructors Championships in that span. During its heyday in the Sixties, Seventies and early Eighties, Team Lotus was one of the greatest innovators in the sport. Unfortunately, after founder Colin Chapman's death, the team eventually withered.

The new Lotus effort would likely be sponsored by long-time Sauber backer Petronas and the team could be led by former Renault and Toyota technical director Mike Gascoyne. So far, there has been no official comment from anyone reported to be involved.



[Source: Autocar]


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 5 Comments
      • 5 Years Ago
      I love the past glory as well but the past is exactly that. The game has moved on and all of you who think the good old days will be back with a vengeance are sadly mistaken. There is so much more to this story and I'm sure it's not as innocent and pure as we want to believe.
      • 5 Years Ago
      At first blush, it would be great to see Lotus back. But seeing them backmarking would be painful. Also, I doubt they have the racing engineering skills they used to have, and seeing them run a purchased motor would also be a big downer.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Lotus never built its own F1 engines. Recall that they were the debut team for the Cosworth DFV and ran variants of into the eighties when they switched to renault and honda turbos. Later they ran the Ford HB and Mugen power.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Yeah, keep on dreaming. They all broke, Lotus is still losing money like waterfall (the only one in the black is Lotus Engineering). Proton just posted a profit of a mere $15million dollars after losing billions in the span of 5 years. I guess the real money is at Petronas. They bankrolled sauber operation pretty heavily early in the decade building wind tunnels, setting up engineering companies and pretty much footing the bill for everything while still paying sponsorship money to Sauber. If any I'm betting we sooner see Petronas F1 team (ala BAR) rather than Lotus F1.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Does this mean Hunt will sell "Lotus Racing" to Proton? Or Will Proton just make there own version of "Lotus Racing"? Remember there were 3 companies in Champman's day Lotus Cars, Lotus Engineering, and Lotus Racing Proton owns 2 of the three. However it happens I would love to see Lotus back on the grid. It took Ferrari until the 90's and Lotus to stop racing (oh and Chapman's passing) to pass Lotus for the most F1 wins.