Renault’s Formula 1 programme could be in the firing-line with the French manufacturer set to make drastic cost cuts amidst its toughest period in recent memory.
Even before the onset of the coronavirus, Renault announced in February its plan to reduce costs after posting its first annual loss in a decade. Now the financial woes seem to have deepened as on Wednesday they accepted a €5 billion loan from the French government, who own a 15% stake in the company.
As per a report from Les Echos, these difficulties have caused the company to consider closing up-to four of its French factories over the next few years, and it is speculated that its Formula 1 team could also become a casualty.
Spending upwards of €200 million a year between car and engine development, Renault might have a hard time justifying the continuation of both projects, particularly given the dearth of recent positive results.
Whether that means Renault leaves the sport entirely or merely retreats to once again being purely an engine supplier remains to be seen, but a savings plan is expected to be announced on May 29 that at the very least, should provide an indication of where the F1 team is headed.