Renault Group and Gravity Motorsports S.a.r.l., an affiliate of Genii Capital SA, are pleased to announce the signature of a Letter of Intent regarding the potential acquisition by Renault of a controlling stake in Lotus F1 Team Ltd.
"The signature of this Letter of Intent marks Renault’s first step towards the project of a Renault Formula 1 team from the 2016 racing season thereby extending 38 years of commitment of the brand to world’s premier motorsport championship series."
"Renault Group and Gravity will work together in the coming weeks to eventually turn this initial undertaking into a definitive transaction provided all terms and conditions are met between them and other interested parties."
The crucial bit here is that both parties are looking for a sale ahead of the 2016 season, indicating that the current Lotus F1 Team will likely run Renault power units again after a single year of Mercedes power. It remains to be seen in the next few weeks what exactly will be decided, but such deal could free up a Mercedes engine supply package to resolve Red Bull's or Toro Rosso's lack of engine partner in 2016.
Lotus however to have a contract for Mercedes power in place for 2016.
If such switch happens, it is very unlikely that Lotus, or Renault as the team's new name might be, will make a big impact in 2016, given that development and design of the team's 2016 chassis is already well underway.