Renault Sport has finally confirmed they have completed the takeover of the Lotus F1 Team and will return to the sport as a manufacturer entry in 2016.
After a few months of negotiations and doubts, the deal has finally been secured that will allow Renault back onto the grid for the first time since 2011, when Lotus took over the entry from the French manufacturer.
As far back as September, Renault signed a Letter of Intent to take back over from Lotus, and following the conclusion of the 2015 season, the contracts have now been signed between the main parties, with the rest of the terms looking to be settled over the ‘shortest timeframe possible’.
Carlos Ghosn, the Chairman and CEO of Renault, revealed that they had two very distinct options about the future direction of the team, but felt remaining in Formula 1 was the best one.
“Renault had two options: to come back at 100 percent or leave,” insisted Ghosn. “After a detailed study, I have decided that Renault will be in Formula 1, starting 2016.
“The final details supplied by F1’s main stakeholders gave us the confidence to accept this new challenge. Our ambition is to win – even if it will take some time.”
Former GP2 Series champions Pastor Maldonado and Jolyon Palmer had already been announced as the driver pairing for Lotus in 2016, and are likely to remain in place for Renault’s manufacturer return.