Switch to Merc power wouldn't be magic cure - Maldonado
Pastor Maldonado does not think a switch to Mercedes power would guarantee success for Lotus as rumours the team will ditch Renault gather pace.
The Lotus team, which used to be owned by Renault, has struggled for results this season with many of its issues centering around the power unit. McLaren is set to switch to Honda power next year, opening up a customer slot for another team with Mercedes, and Lotus has been linked to a switch for next season.
However, Maldonado, who said he did not know if the speculation was accurate, was sceptical that a new engine supplier would solve all his team's problems.
"It's very tough and difficult," he said. "If it's just magic that you can put the [Mercedes] engine in and then go and win races, okay let's go for it. But it is not that simple, you need to take care of the design of the car.
"It's not an easy decision and Renault has always been very successful in the past. Hopefully they can improve next year, or even from here to get closer and closer, at least to the Ferrari level in terms of engine. It's very difficult for a driver to say 'okay, let's go for this engine' because behind the engine there is a huge amount of work in terms of design for the car. I'm not 100% sure about the move."
However, Maldonado said there was no denying that the power unit now has the biggest impact on performance.
"It's more due to the engine for sure, because the engine has become the most important part of the car, more than the aero," he said. "To be honest, we know the best car in terms of aero is the Red Bull. They did the best last year and the best two years ago, for sure Mercedes has a very good car, but they have the best compromise because with the engine and the car all the package is working together. The other engine power units are a bit far away from the pace."