What's in a name? More than you might think, particularly in Formula One where two teams have been fighting for use of the Lotus moniker for a couple of years now.
Team Lotus of Formula One confirmed it will extend its F1 engine deal with Renault through to the end of 2013. The team, headed by entrepreneur Tony Fernandes, announced at the Singapore Grand Prix that it will employ a Red Bull-developed KERS system starting in 2012. Fernandes said the Team Lotus-Renault-Red Bull deal will put the team on a more even playing field:
Team Lotus of Formula One confirmed it will extend its engine deal with Renault through the end of 2013. The team, headed by entrepreneur Tony Fernandes, announced at the Singapore Grand Prix that it will employ a Red Bull-developed KERS system starting in 2012. Fernandes said the Team Lotus-Renault-Red Bull deal will put the team on a more even playing field:
Glancing down the F1 roster this year has lead to a little confusion for many. That's because there are two teams that lay claim to the Lotus name, and they're both powered by Renault. The French automaker and engine supplier is stuck in the middle of the naming-rights tug-of-war, but if you were hoping things might be clarified for next season, don't hold your breath. Because while the real Lotus continues its partnership with Renault over one team (the one in the black and gold in the middle o
Colin Chapman's legacy is a great one, without a doubt. But Lotus – the automaker and engineering firm he founded – isn't the only one wielding it these days. So, too, do a number of manufacturers that build "continuation" versions of the famed Lotus 7, chief among them Caterham. And so does Team Lotus.
The relationship between Lotus the automaker and Lotus the F1 racing team only seems to be getting more complicated. The name was licensed by Malaysian state automaker Proton to fellow Malaysian businessman Tony Fernandes for use by his F1 team. Then Fernandes announced he didn't need Proton's permission and bought the name from a third party who claimed ownership. Proton and Lotus disputed the claim and canceled the licensing agreement, but Fernandes insisted he was within his rights. Both Lotu
Stick with us here, because this is going to get a little complicated. We have on the one hand Lotus Cars and Group Lotus. On the other we have the current Lotus F1 team. The former – producers of such sportscars as the Elise and the new Elite – is owned by Malaysian state automaker Proton. The former is also Malaysian-owned, but by businessman Tony Fernandes (pictured above, owner also of Air Asia), and uses the name Lotus under license from Proton.
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