New ‘customer cars’ idea dead

A new ‘customer car’ plan for F1’s future is dead in the water, Germany’s Auto Motor und Sport reports.

Bernie Ecclestone revealed recently that he is planning to allow small teams to buy year-old customer cars in the next Concorde Agreement. But the F1 chief executive acknowledged the dilemma that teams taking up that option would most likely all flock to the best constructors, resulting in a dearth of constructors on the grid.

“The way I’m imagining it, this would not be possible,” Ecclestone said recently. “I’ll tell you about it soon.”

His plan may now never see the light of day. Auto Motor und Sport reports that the customer car issue is once again dead for now. The report said Ferrari and Red Bull were also championing the idea, which would have included McLaren, Mercedes, Lotus and Williams also designated as F1’s official constructors.

The other half of the grid – Sauber, Force India, Toro Rosso, Marussia, Caterham and HRT – would have had to buy their single seaters ‘off the shelf’. The report said Sauber and Force India protested the loudest.

“Who is going to forbid them from making cars?” German reporter Tobias Gruner said. “Some teams were even threatening with a move to a EU court,” he revealed.


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