Lotus confirms switch to Mercedes power
Lotus has confirmed its switch to Mercedes power next season with a long-term supply deal in place.
The team currently runs Renault engines, and until 2010 was owned by the French manufacturer, but is switching to Mercedes next year. Mercedes has the most successful power unit under the new V6 turbo regulations and currently supplies four of the top six teams in the constructors' championship.
Lotus has struggled for performance and reliability this year and is hoping the switch to Mercedes power will bring future success.
"We are pleased to have been chosen by Mercedes AMG High Performance Powertrains in a significant long term deal," Lotus CEO Matthew Carter said. "We intend to return to the front of the field with the goals of winning Grands Prix and being a strong championship contender once more and we see this new agreement as one step towards this aim.
"The Mercedes-Benz Power Unit has shown good performance on track and it is our goal to marry this motive force to Enstone's chassis expertise. It is our desire that the E23 Hybrid, powered by Mercedes-Benz, heralds a new era of success for Enstone. At this juncture we would also like to thank Renault, who have been so closely associated with the team over its history and for the joint success we have achieved together."
McLaren is set to switch from Mercedes to Honda power next year, meaning the addition of Lotus will ensure the German manufacturer still has three customers.
"It was strategically important for Mercedes-Benz to continue to supply three customers throughout this generation of Power Unit, in addition to the primary focus on our Silver Arrows works team, and it was therefore clear that we would be looking for a new customer from 2015," Mercedes boss Toto Wolff said. "Lotus F1 Team is an impressive organisation that has delivered competitive on-track performances in recent seasons. We are pleased to welcome them to the Mercedes-Benz family and look forward to building a productive and performant working relationship in the years ahead."
Andy Cowell, Managing Director of Mercedes' engine division, added: "We are delighted to welcome Lotus F1 Team as a customer of Mercedes AMG High Performance Powertrains from the 2015 season. Lotus F1 Team is a strong technical group with excellent facilities and I am confident that together we will deliver a step forward in track performance next year. In 2014, the organisation at Brixworth has demonstrated that it can support three customer teams to the high standards expected of Mercedes-Benz, in addition to our focus on the works Silver Arrows. We are very pleased to have the opportunity to continuing doing so from 2015, as we seek to make further gains in both performance and reliability."
The power unit will use Petronas fuel and lubricants - the same as the Mercedes works team.