Renault first entered the Formula 1 grid back in 1977’s British Grand Prix. Since then, the French team has functioned as both a constructor and engine supplier for different periods. However, they are now rebranding as Alpine for 2021.
The Enstone-based team have been battling in the mid-field since 2016. They had a better season this year as they claimed P5 with 181 points as compared to 2019, where they claimed P5 with 91 points. Daniel Ricciardo claimed two podiums for the team as Esteban Ocon stood on the podium once.
Former champion Fernando Alonso is making a comeback with Renault next season and will dive alongside Esteban Ocon. Meanwhile, a report suggests that the French team is prepared with a new engine for 2021.
“The 2021 car, which does not yet have an official name, will be an evolution of the RS20 because there are many elements of the chassis frozen by regulation, although changes can be made to the aerodynamics,” stated the report.
Renault left with no customers on the grid
As of 2021, there are four engine manufacturers on the grid – Mercedes, Ferrari, Honda, and Renault. As an engine manufacturer, having a customer team is of significant financial advantage. However, Renault has lost all of their customer teams over the last two years.
Towards the end of 2019, Red Bull boss, Christian Horner announced that they would be breaking ties with Renault and bringing back the Japanese engine manufacturer Honda in Formula 1. Moreover, McLaren is switching to Mercedes as their power unit supplier next year.
Considering Ferrari‘s power unit woes, the Enstone team’s engine appears more powerful. “They were second on the grid behind Mercedes and ahead of Honda and Ferrari,” states the report. However, their biggest challenge going ahead will be consistency across different circuits.
The report further points out, “they have been working on a new power unit that can be released in 2021. In 2020 the evolutions of the current one were parked, which in any case had already improved.”
Honda will leave the grid by the end of 2021, and it’ll be interesting to see who will sign up with Red Bull to deliver their power unit. Renault will hope for a strong 2021 season, looking to take advantage of Ferrari’s struggles and attract more power unit customers.