Lotus Motorsport and ART Grand Prix have announced a collaboration which will see ART’s GP2, GP2 Asia and GP3 cars named Lotus ART from next year.
This raises some questions as it was revealed earlier today that Lotus Racing team principal Tony Fernandes is entering a new team in GP2 next year to be called Team Air Asia.
Fernandes owns the rights to use the ‘Lotus’ name in F1 and has been seeking the rights to the original Team Lotus name for his F1 operation.
Lotus Motorsport’s director of operations Miodrag Kotur said:
The move into GP2 and GP3 solidifies Lotus Motorsport’s commitment to promoting driver development and supporting the search for the world champions of the future. Lotus won’t simply be partner in name only, ART Grand Prix will also benefit from Lotus’ considerable engineering and technical support and experience.
Nico Rosberg, Lewis Hamilton and Nico Hulkenberg all won GP2 championships with ART.
Hamilton won the F3 Euroseries with the team (then called ASM) in 2005, as did Paul di Resta, Romain Grosjean and Hulkenberg. Sauber’s 2011 test driver Esteban Gutierrez won the inaugural GP3 championship for the team this year.
Lotus naming rights row