ABU DHABI, Nov 10, 2011 (AFP) - The Team Lotus name will be taken out of Formula One again next year following a chaotic end to the brand's second era in the sport.
This was made clear on the eve of this weekend's Abu Dhabi Grand Prix when it was announced that the Team Lotus brand had been sold, by Malaysian entrepreneur Tony Fernandes - also owner of English premier league soccer club Queens Park Rangers - to the Norfolk-based car-maker Lotus Group.
Lotus Group is a sponsor of the Renault team that next season is expected to run in Formula One as Lotus F1 Team.
The two 2011 teams known as Lotus and Renault were granted leave by the F1 Commission of the sport's ruling body, the International Motoring Federation's (FIA), to change their names in an agreement announced last week following the settlement of a long-running legal dispute over the use of the Lotus name.
Fernandes confirmed his team, currently racing as Team Lotus, will next year be known as Caterham F1.
Group Lotus, new owners of the Team Lotus brand, have indicated they will not bring the name back into motor racing.
Renault is owned by a Luxemburg-based venture capital group called Genii Capital, which also has a shareholding in Group Lotus.
The ending of the saga means that this weekend's Abu Dhabi Grand Prix will see the penultimate outing for Team Lotus. The final race for the modern reincarnation of the original revered championship-winning team launched by Colin Chapman will be the season ending Brazilian Grand Prix later this month.