Lotus Formula 1 team agrees long-term Renault deal

Lotus has confirmed it has agreed a new long-term engine deal with Renault

Lotus Formula 1 team agrees long-term Renault deal

The completion of a deal for this year was a formality, although the team has stated that the new contract to use its 1.6-litre turbocharged V6s is for "2014 and beyond".

Lotus has been powered by Renault engines since 2001 (operating as the firm's factory team from 2002-10) and also from 1995-97.

In the intervening years it used non-works powerplants based on the marque's units, badged as Playlife, during its Benetton era.

The Renault-powered Lotus E22 made its public debut in Bahrain on Wednesday, and Renault Sport F1 president Jean-Michel Jaliner stressed the close collaboration with the team even though Red Bull is its frontline squad.

"We are pleased to see our partnership officially confirmed as the E22 takes to the track for its first official test," said Jalinier.

"The relationship between Viry and Enstone has gone from strength to strength over the past few years.

"This is illustrated in no better way than the excellent - and very close - collaboration on the 2014 car, which is more technically complex than any previous designs.

"We hope this spirit will pay dividends on track this season and going forward into the new F1 technical era."

Lotus E22 technical analysis

Lotus is understood to have held talks with rival engine manufacturers Mercedes and Ferrari last year, although continuing with Renault was always the most likely option.

But while two have been working together, it took until now for the deal to be finalised.

"The Lotus F1 team and Renault Sport F1 have enjoyed a successful partnership these past few years and we look forward to continue to build on our relationship and collaboration in 2014 and beyond," said Lotus CEO Matthew Carter.

"It is the beginning of a new era in Formula 1 and we are pleased to embrace it together with Renault Sport F1."

ENSTONE AND RENAULT 1995-97, 2001-14

Seasons: 17
Wins: 34
Poles: 26
Drivers' championships: 3
Constructors' championships: 3
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