GROUP LOTUS is considering the prospect of legal action after revealing it has not been consulted over Litespeed?s decision to revive the Team Lotus moniker for the 2010 Formula One season.
Litespeed?s founders Nino Judge and Steve Kenchington received permission from Team Lotus rights holder David Hunt to use the brand in an attempt to boost its bid for a place on the Formula 1 grid next season.
Judge and Kenchington, who previously worked as engineers with Lotus, said the decision to revive the Team Lotus brand was inspired by the similarities between the outfits during the early phases of their existence.
"Team Lotus is synonymous with great British engineering and F1 innovation, such as the Lotus 25 being the first monocoque chassis in F1 and the introduction of groundbreaking sponsorship, both of which easily demonstrate why ex-Lotus personnel would want to bring this championship-winning name back to the formula," Judge said when announcing Litespeed's intentions.
"Litespeed was born from a similar British background - a factor that was at the core of Colin Chapman's beliefs and subsequent success.?
However, following the lead of the Brabham family and the proposed Brabham Grand Prix entry, Group Lotus has chosen to distance itself from the team, announcing it is considering all available options.
The statement read: ?Group Lotus plc and its subsidiary Lotus Cars Limited, the manufacturer of the iconic Lotus Elise and global high technology engineering consultancy, are not connected or affiliated to, nor in any other way associated with the newly announced "Team Lotus" that has submitted an entry for the 2010 Formula 1 championship.
?Group Lotus plc will take all necessary steps to protect its name, reputation and brand image.?
The FIA will announce the 13 teams accepted to participate in the 2010 F1 season on Friday, with Australian Peter Windsor?s USF1 entry favourite to receive one of the three available places in the championship.
David Richards? Prodrive entry, which is poised to be rebranded as Aston Martin in 2012, and Lola Cars are also expected to receive an invitation to compete next year, while the Epsilon Euskadi team remains an outside chance of securing a place on the grid.