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Has Red Bull already terminated the Renault contract?

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R ed Bull consultant Helmut Marko is a clear man Words. Usually he does not avoid an answer. But when it comes to the question of which engine Red Bull will drive in 2016, the ex-racing driver is buttoned up. 'The official answer is like this. We have a contract with Renault until the end of 2016. According to our information, Renault will decide on its future until Monza. After that, we will act accordingly.'

Red Bull notice to Renault already sent?

Rumors tell a different story: According to this, Red Bull has already quit Renault. Allegedly in the middle of this week. It is said that Red Bull refers to the poor results, which are mainly due to the disappointing engine development. A corresponding clause should be anchored in the contract.

Trust is permanently disrupted. The expansion stage planned for the GP Russia should only bring 0.15 seconds of lap time. For this, 4 development tokens are consumed. According to rumors, Renault has advised its chassis partner that it will not accept premature termination of the contract. Which would mean that this conflict could be fought in court.

A legal battle would be bad for Red Bull. Because Mercedes would not be able to pull out any engines. In principle, the team management is ready to supply Red Bull with drive units, but they do not want to be the cause of a legal dispute between a future customer and another automotive company. In addition, Mercedes and Renault announced a joint venture for road car development in October 2014. Mercedes will do a hell of a lot to spit Renault boss Carlos Ghosn into the soup.

When asked why they want to put a potential World Cup rival in the nest, Mercedes gives the answer: ' Internal competition stimulates business. If we want to become world champions, we have to be able to beat all of them. '

Until Monza, there will be clarity at Renault

It is true of Marko's statement that Renault will make a decision before the Italian GP whether to buy Lotus or not. And whether the comeback will be initiated as a works team in 2016 or in 2017.

Apparently, the chances are good that Renault will again bring a national racing team to the start. However, this does not have to affect the delivery of engines to Red Bull and Toro Rossoto have. Even if Renault incorporates Lotus, the French want to fulfill the contracts with their customers. Because that would provide a better benchmark for solving engine problems.

The open engine question also has an impact on the design of the car. The 2016 Lotus is designed for Mercedes engines. Lotus, however, knows the Renault engine from the 2014 season. So you wouldn't be breaking new ground. Quite different with Red Bull. But the racing team from Milton Keynes has enough capacity to adapt the car to a different engine at short notice. 'We can still convert the new car in December,' says Marko.


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