Caterham F1 are the real Lotus F1 team, Renault have adopted the Lotus name and JPS colour. Caterham run in the old green and yellow colours, but as such there is no such thing as a Britich Lotus anymore as they are Malaysian owned. So Lotus is Renault and Caterham Are Malaysian Lotus.
The REAL Lotus F1 team was the team created by Colin Chapman IMHO.
There were 2 different Lotus teams last year.
Both had colour schemes Colin Chapman would recognise, both had his Lotus name.
The other links with Colin Chapman's Lotus are pretty tenuous.
Following legal action, one of them had to changed their name - that's now called Caterham.
So there is only one so called Lotus team year, that's the former Toleman / Benetton / Renault team from Enstone.
Both Caterham and Lotus are British based. Neither gets their money from Britain. Colin Chapman was happy enough to accept money from outside the UK as long as it enabled him to go racing, so I doubt he would have been too bothered where the money came from.
Team Lotus died in 1994. You could call a newborn baby Francis Albert Sinatra but it wouldn't actually be ol' blue eyes.
The team based in Norfolk - 1Malaysia, but operating as Caterham F1 - has nothing to do with Lotus, having sold the Team Lotus name to Proton after winning its court case to say that it could use the name.
Lotus Group is the title sponsor of the Enstone-based team that was formerly Renault, Benetton and Toleman and is currently owned by GenII - albeit with a large loan from Renault.
The problem was that Team Lotus and Lotus Cars (later Lotus Group) were divided into separate entities by Colin Chapman for many reasons, mostly to do with the Inland Revenue. When 1Malaysia bought into the start-up F1 team in Norfolk back in 2009 they negotiated a deal with the Malaysian government to use the Lotus brand name.
This agreement was revoked in late 2010, when Lotus Group announced it was going to sponsor the former Renault F1 team. As a result 1Malaysia boss Tony Fernandes bought the Team Lotus brand. This went to court. Nobody won and two teams called Lotus took the grid in 2011.
Tony Fernandes had meanwhile bought Caterham Cars and sold the Team Lotus name to the Malaysian government in a contra-deal for his airline business. If the current saga has done one thing, it has at least reunited Team Lotus with Lotus Group - and the whole lot is probably going to be on sale before long.
Without an F1 team, of course. There hasn't been a genuine Lotus F1 team since 1994.
Well done #8 yours is by far the most accurate answer.
To tidy a couple of things up. GenII paid off the Renault loan, with a loan from Proton, owner of Lotus cars. That debt has now passed to Hi Com who purchased the entire Proton group including lotus cars this year. The sponsorship deal has ended with the black and gold team from Enstone but they are still entered as Lotus because changing that is complicated and potentially very expensive.
Tony Fernandes actually won the court case but elected to sell the spoils of victory back to Proton/Lotus. Having purchased Caterham cars he then changed the name and the team is relocating to the Leafield technical centre.
I think it would be useful to quote doug Nye from the court case to decide who owned the rights to the name " Mr Fernandes is in the right but frankly, they are both out of their tiny minds"
Actually, neither now has any connection with Lotus.
Last week saw another turn of direction with the news that the Genii Capital-owned F1 team has terminated its sponsorship agreement with Group Lotus. Financial uncertainty has surrounded Group Lotus since the investment arm of the Malaysian Government, Khazanah, sold its near on 43 percent stake in Lotus parent company Proton, to another Malaysian entity, DRB-Hicom.
Under the sponsorship deal between Genii Capital and Group Lotus, Proton held an option to buy the F1 team from Genii. However, Gerard Lopez, owner of Genii Capital, says that deal no longer exists.
Genii had previously shown interest in buying Group Lotus and its said that Lopez was in talks with Proton before DRB-Hicom purchased their stake. Lopez hasn't ruled out such a move but is unsure if the possibility will present itself.
There are no Lotus cars in F1 today.
The one entered as Lotus is actualy a Renault. The one entered by Caterham is now a Caterham, not sure what it was previously.
The Renault carries Lotus branding, in the same way that Vettel's car is branded "Red Bull".
These days its all about branding, you may have noticed that a Peugeot 107, Toyota Aygo, Renault Twingo, Citroen C1 and other cars have the same basic body shell - pick the brand image that suits you best.
A Renault (2011 F1 car), with the application of a black and gold paint job, has become a Lotus (2012 F1 car) ! Over the same period, what was previously a Lotus, has morphed into a Caterham. Anyone remembers that Colin Chapman's brilliant Super 7 sports car became the Caterham 7, still in production up to today ?
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