Car magazine, reporting on a potential business alliance between Mercedes and Aston Martin, also reveals Mercedes future ambitions for its own F1 team:
Says a senior source at Daimler: ‘Our agreement with McLaren won’t last forever [Mercedes holds a 40 percent stake in McLaren]. There will be no replacement for the SLR, and as soon as the price is right, we are interested in taking over the F1 business.’
Mercedes became McLaren’s engine supplier in 1995, and together they won three titles in 1998 and 1999. No further titles have followed, though there have been several near-misses.
The two collaborated on the Mercedes SLR McLaren supercar, but there are no future collaborations of the sort in the pipeline.
It isn’t the first time rumours have arisen suggesting Mercedes wants its own F1 team. Could it end up going the same way as its domestic rival BMW, which became frustrated in its partnership with a British F1 team (Williams) and instead took over another F1 outfit (Sauber)?
Mercedes’ links with McLaren run far longer and deeper than BMW’s did with Williams, and the team may deliver its first title in nine years next week. But you can never take it for granted in F1 that things will remain the same forever.