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Renault Formula 1

Have Renault already bought Lotus?

Renault Formula 1

A number of international media sources believe Lotus is on the cusp of being sold, if not already in the sold to Renault with only the final legalities set to be ironed out.

Just two weeks ago, amid reports the Enstone team was in talks with its former owner Renault, Lotus chief Matthew Carter declared: “My shareholders have said quite specifically the team isn’t for sale”.

But the speculation did not stop. It has been fueled, in part, by the fact that Gerard Lopez, representing the majority owner Genii, has been almost completely absent from the Formula 1 paddock so far in 2015.

The Luxembourger then suddenly appeared in Barcelona, where Autosprint now reports that talks to sell a major chunk of the Enstone team back to Renault took place.

It is well known that Renault is openly contemplating its approach to F1 at present, having not ruled out staying as a supplier, quitting altogether or returning to full works team status.

GHOSN Carlos (Por) President De Renault JALINIER Jean Michel (Fra) Renault Sport F1 President Portrait during the 2014 Formula One World Championship, Grand Prix of Monaco from May 21st to 25th 2014, in Monaco. Photo Jean Michel Le Meur / DPPI

Autosprint reports that one plan devised by Renault’s F1 operations chief Remi Taffin is to buy back Enstone and re-install Bob Bell as team boss.

It is claimed a final decision – at least with regards to the Enstone plan – if not already agreed to, could be made by the end of this week. Renault chairman and CEO Carlos Ghosn was a notable figure in the Monaco paddock last weekend.

Writing in Turun Sanomat, correspondent Luis Vasconcelos reports: “Negotiations on the purchase of the Lotus team have progressed to the decisive phase.

“A deadline for the Lopez and (Renault F1 boss Cyril) Abiteboul negotiations is the end of May, so the outcome is expected in the coming days,” he added.