For anyone not up to speed with the Lotus vs Lotus saga in Formula 1, it’s been about the Group Lotus title sponsorship of the Renault F1 cars (to create the black-and-gold Lotus-Renault) and Team Lotus’ tussle for the same name (to create Team Lotus-Renault). The story has now taken another interesting twist as Team Lotus Enterprises Limited, headed by Tony Fernandes, has today announced its acquisition of Caterham Cars Limited for an undisclosed sum.
The outcome of this that Caterham Cars is now owned by Team Lotus… Confused – and ironic, given the origins of Caterham and its staple product, which is an evolution of Colin Chapman’s Lotus Seven. Despite the change of ownership, the current management structure will remain in place, leaving Caterham Cars Managing Director, Ansar Ali in charge.
Caterham will build a limited run of 25 Team Lotus Special Edition Sevens to mark the announcement – these will feature a £3000 upgrade package and a bespoke colour scheme that mirrors the green and yellow colours of Team Lotus in F1. The upgrade package will include an invitation to a customised tour of the Team Lotus F1 factory in Hingham, Norfolk.
Tony Fernandes commented: ‘Caterham has a unique place at the heart of the motoring world. As well as being proudly and staunchly British, it has an enviable and uniquely unblemished reputation within the industry for performance, handling and engineering excellence.’
Ansar Ali, added: ‘This is yet another exciting chapter in the Caterham story, and an opportunity to expand the Caterham family beyond the Seven and SP/300.R and breathe new life into our uniquely respected brand and mature it into a truly global business.’
Could this see Team Lotus and Group Lotus rivalling each other on the road as well as track? Only time will tell…
[Source: Octane Magazine]