The FIA will need to revisit its regulations on the supply of F1 power units. At present no manufacturer can supply more than four teams and Honda has so far shown no interest in recruiting another team to their stable.
Today, the Chairman of Renault-Nissan, Carlos Ghosn, confirms they will no longer be supplying customer teams in Formula One.
A bitter sounding Ghosn explained at the Frankfurt Motor Show: “We have been clear in saying ‘don’t count on us as a provider of engines’. It is clear that if you provide engines you aren’t mentioned when you win and you are criticised when you have problems.
“We already alerted the Formula 1 authorities that ‘Don’t count on us as a provider of an engine. It’s over’”.
Clearly the heavy and public criticisms Renault have received from the Red Bull hierarchy have significantly affected Renault’s thinking. When asked whether comments from Marko, Horner and Mateschitz had been fair, he retorted: “It is not a question of fair, it is a question of sportsmanship. A team should win and lose together. What has been said is a question of sportsmanship. Again I say, you should win and lose together.”
Christian Horner admitted in Monza he had been talking to other F1 power unit manufacturers: “Inevitably it is my job to talk with everybody, so you do your necessary due diligence.”
Mercedes have announced they will not supply Red Bull with their power units, bad blood still runs deep in Stuttgart over the way the fizzy drinks sponsored teams bailed out of the collective bargaining with Ecclestone at the end of the last Concorde agreement.
Mercedes will most likely supply Manor F1, which frees up a spot in the Ferrari engine stable. But only one.
However, Ferrari have confirmed they would supply Red Bull with engines in 2016, though the rather desperate state Red Bull find themselves in means their negotiating hand is week.
Ghosn concluded his press conference confirming no decision has yet been made on Renault’s F1 future. “We will either exit or run our own team. We don’t have a clear decision yet.”
Lotus are facing a petition from creditors for payment and may yet be placed into administration by a London court on Friday.
CEO Matthew Carter admits, “No one wants that to happen, We just need to ensure that everyone is paid.”
Carter and other senior Lotus representatives have made it patently clear that they would welcome becoming a Renault works team once again.
However, the Renault decision to buy Lotus hangs on whether Ecclestone will recognise them as a ‘historic team’, given their championship winning years in 2005/06.
This status would see Renault receive up to £30 million from FOM as part of their funding of their F1 2016 entrant.