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Lotus refuses to comment as rumors of switch to Mercedes power swirl

Jul 1, 2014, 12:42 PM EDT

Pastor Maldonado AP

So far, Mercedes has three teams slated to use their V-6 engines in 2015. If you believe the current rumors, there will soon be a fourth team in their stable.

Over the last couple of weeks, multiple reports from entities such as noted F1 scribes Adam Cooper and Joe Saward, as well as Germany’s Auto Motor und Sport, have touched on rumblings that Lotus will replace McLaren as that fourth Mercedes-powered team next year.

This morning, a spokesman for Lotus – which is currently powered by Renault – refused to comment on the rumors according to Britain’s Sky Sports.

The team has regressed badly this year after finishing fourth in the Constructors’ in 2013 despite well-documented financial issues. A lot of the blame for their current decline can go to its Renault power unit, which has failed to keep up with the Mercedes-powered entries.

Regardless of whether these Lotus-Mercedes rumors are true or not, they can’t make Renault’s job any easier at the moment as they continue to sustain criticism for their efforts – particularly from their top client, four-time defending World Champions Red Bull.

Team principal Christian Horner has declared Renault’s contribution “unacceptable” and more recently, driver Daniel Ricciardo admitted that their engine situation has been a source of frustration.

“Don’t get me wrong, it is frustrating because it is hard because a lot of it happens on the straight and there is no skill required on the straight,” Ricciardo said to reporters. “So it is throwing talent away for nothing.

“Don’t get me wrong, anyone can hop in the car and if you are not scared to go 300 kilometers an hour, you can easily go flat out on the straight – so it is giving away time for nothing, which is the frustrating part.

“I guess from [Red Bull's] side, they spent time, hours, money, on designing a fast car through the corners yet it just gets washed away on the straights so that is the frustrating part, but it is what it is.”

  1. techmeister1 - Jul 1, 2014 at 1:04 PM

    Boo Hoo for Red B.S. Racing with the exception of Ricciardo. They were happy with Renault when they were winning. Now with Renault and Ferrari still trying to optimize their ’14 power units for the new formula, all of a sudden Red B.S. Racing is unhappy with Renault. That’s the way it goes sometimes in racing. It’s not like Ferrari and Renault are intentionally delivering less than as much power as Mercedes is. It’s going to take a lot of time and effort to try and close the gap to Mercedes on the PU. Expecting miracles is ignorant and foolish. Instead they should be working on optimizing what they have and developing more chassis performance while they have the time. Complaining isn’t a solution to the problem.

  2. barrylibby - Jul 1, 2014 at 9:25 PM

    Bernies next idea will be two teams Honda and Toyota with Priuses Hybrid Hondas !

  3. adam1638 - Jul 2, 2014 at 3:22 AM

    This it’s what happens when you freeze development and drop testing.and it’s even worse next year.

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