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SBD Global/May 31, 2013/Franchises
Williams, Mercedes Sign Long-Term Engine Supply Deal Starting In 2014
Published May 31, 2013
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TAKING CONTROL: REUTERS' Alan Baldwin wrote the announcement means the German manufacturer's engines "will power four of the 11 teams next season before McLaren enter a new partnership with Honda" from '15. Renault "will have at least three teams next season." Mercedes Exec Dir Toto Wolff "is also a Williams shareholder," although he has said that he will sell the stake. Mercedes "will be Williams' sixth change of engine partner in the space of a decade" (REUTERS, 5/30). In N.Y., Marietta Cauchi reported Renault "played down the importance of the news," saying that it is shortly to sign up a new F1 team. Renault has said that "it could supply up to five teams if necessary, though commercially that would be a stretch." Renault Sport F1 CEO Jean-Michel Jalinier said, "Three, or up to four, teams is the ideal for us so the departure of Williams normalizes the situation and makes things much clearer from our side." Representatives for Williams, Renault and Mercedes "all declined to comment on whether the package being offered by Mercedes was less costly than Renault’s price for the new hybrid engines," though analysts believe that Renault’s technology is more expensive (WALL STREET JOURNAL, 5/30).