Engine deals for 2011

There have been reports in the German press that Red Bull Racing will be using Mercedes-Benz engines in 2011, and Force India will get Renaults. This all sounds plausible on paper, but there are a few things which mitigate against that: the most important of which is that McLaren is believed to have a veto on the supply of Mercedes engines, negotiated as part of the settlement between the two parties when Mercedes was in hurry to break up that alliance in order to buy Brawn Grand Prix. There is no reason at all why McLaren would want to allow Adrian Newey and his Red Bull engineering team the opportunity to get an engine which is rumoured to be slightly better (in some respects) than the Renault.

Obviously Mercedes would like the idea as it would get Sebastian Vettel under its wing, which would be good for the German market, given the lack of performance from Michael Schumacher. However, it is probably more likely that the stories are a lever on Force India to pay up what it owes to the German car company. As we have seen recently in the High Court, Vijay Mallya’s team has something of a tendency to pay its bills rather late. Mallya is purported to be a squillionaire, but may have some cash-flow difficulties from time to time.

When push comes to shove, however, money will be found if he is about to lose his engines. We expect Mercedes to stay with Force India; and Red Bull to stay with Renault.

10 thoughts on “Engine deals for 2011

  1. Any news on the Williams engine front? If they do a tie-up with Porsche/VW, I imagine that the new engines would come on stream with the world engine in 2013? No sense in developing a new V8 for two year’s use…

  2. Mercedes will of course still have Rosberg and Sutil “under their wing” to appeal to the German market.

    Dreadful misuse of the word “mitigate” by the way.

  3. Tut tut Joe, even more Michael bashing, “…given the lack of performance from Michael Schumacher.”

    1. Martin Collyer,

      Yes, well I am sure that when he beats Nico Rosberg he will gain respect. Until that happens…

  4. Not to mention the fact that FI has a technical collaboration agreement with Mclaren for all things mechanical in the car, i.e. gearbox, suspension, etc…which i cannot imagine can be seamlessly transitioned from one engine to other….

  5. What is the likelihood that Red Bull AND Force India run Renault engines next year, and Mercedes supply someone else?

  6. Just a thought Joe, that I’d be interested to hear your response to…

    On James Allen’s site a few months back he held a poll asking which German driver was the most popular. Predictably, Schumacher was the overwhelming favorite pulling in close to half the respondents votes but the order behind him was particularly surprising. Both Rosberg and Sutil ranked significantly ahead of Vettel. It’s possible that a lot of Vettel fans are originally Schumacher fans and that would partly explain his poor performance in this poll but is it possible that Vettel’s popularity is just overstated?

    What’s your general feeling on Vettel’s popularity compared to Rosberg and Sutil?

    Australian Autosport Community

  7. Joe,

    Michael has seven world championships, is clearly uncomfortable with the car and Mercedes has shifted focus towards next season. Beating Rosberg – which he has done a number of times this season and was met by ridiculous stories from the press faction about favortism – should have nothing to do with respect. If you or any fan still doesn’t respect Michael, the most successful driver ever, then I’m afraid it’s never going to happen so why pretend otherwise?

    Regardless, I don’t think you were deliberately bashing Michael in this instance but I believe you know what you’re doing when it comes to dropping a comment like that here and there to ensure an elevated response from your readership. A very good strategy for building this sites popularity and one I fully support as your material is both informative and entertaining and I like that you respond to fans comments.

    Australian Autosport Community

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