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Lotus name struggle.
11-20-2010, 12:26 PM
Post: #1
Lotus name struggle.
Thought we needed a dedicated thread. Came across this.

http://www.saveteamlotus.com/

I hope you have all voted. 83% to keep the name. I assume the 107 no votes are Group Lotus shareholders.

http://apps.facebook.com/opinionpolls/in...1289906357

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11-20-2010, 01:30 PM
Post: #2
RE: Lotus name struggle.
Already wondered if you were behind that saveteamlotus page. Smile
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11-20-2010, 01:43 PM
Post: #3
RE: Lotus name struggle.
It's thought to be David Hunt, in which case it's a bit blatant and may not serve his purpose. The who is info for the domain is hidden but it's registered in Florida, which doesn't really mean anything.

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11-20-2010, 02:18 PM
Post: #4
RE: Lotus name struggle.
Could it be Peter Windsor? He seems to be pretty supportive of Lotus F1 team.
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11-20-2010, 07:01 PM (This post was last modified: 11-20-2010 07:02 PM by cozmoose.)
Post: #5
RE: Lotus name struggle.
I don't get the love for the use of Lotus brand name for Tony's team.
Yes, his team has been the best of the newbies and he seems like a very nice guy.
But, his only claim to the Lotus name is that he bought the right to use the name from someone. There is no other connection to Chapman's Lotus at all. His use of the Lotus history with his current team seems quite disingenuous.
If HRT acquires the name Brabham next year, are we all going to pretend that HRT is suddenly the rightful heir to the legacy of Brabham in F1?

Without knowing all the minute details in this sordid saga, I would think a casual observer would think that the company that actually builds Lotus cars would naturally be allowed to go racing with Lotus name.

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11-20-2010, 07:06 PM
Post: #6
RE: Lotus name struggle.
why are the current lotus road cars any more authentic than the current lotus f1 cars? seems like a draw to me. both are, in actuality, completely unrelated. both have the blessings of the chapman family, for whatever that's worth. but tony bought the IP for the f1 team (which is all that holds most brands together these days), and he was there first. tony wins in my book.
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11-20-2010, 08:01 PM
Post: #7
RE: Lotus name struggle.
(11-20-2010 07:06 PM)frankdouglason Wrote:  why are the current lotus road cars any more authentic than the current lotus f1 cars?

I have spent much of the day thinking about this propted by a guy on that website who commented with the following :-

You really are confused individuals. And like you said yourself, you just don't get it. But attacking Lotus for trying to protect their brand from people like Tony Fernandes is not right.

Colin Chapman founded Lotus and then Team Lotus to become the racing arm of it. He also formed Team Lotus Engineering and Team Lotus America to race in Le Mans and Indianapolis 500. They represented carmanuefactor Lotus and when they won Chapman used that to promote Lotus cars. There is no confusion over why Lotus can, has and will continue to promote their products with the legacy of Chapman and racing teams he founded.

Tony Fernandes on the other hand and David Hunt in most greater extent are nothing but money-hungry opportunists. Fernandes broke the licensing agreements with Lotus and caused this mess because he wanted to have something that clearly wasn't his in the begining. When Fernandes entered F1 he had nothing to do with Lotus. He just selfishly wants to use the name and brand his airplanes and energy drinks to match that. There is just one problem. Even with Hunt, he still just owns the "Team" part of Team Lotus and hopefully he will never get his hands on Lotus that Colin Chapman created and built.


It's the best (but not the greatest) counter argument to the popularist view I have seen and it is thought provoking. I am still with Fernandes, I like what they have done. Before the season began I was able to visit Clive Chapman and since having visited the factory and followed them all season, they are trying to do it right and have won the approval of the Chapman family. However none of that is really useful in court and I am having trouble resolving what I feel is proper and what is right. Neither will matter as outside forces will resolve this.

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11-20-2010, 08:43 PM
Post: #8
RE: Lotus name struggle.
Yaaay, that counter argumanet seems pretty good. I've read as such in interviews where Tony even said that Lotus was his second favorite F1 team, and Williams was his first, which would explain the Air Asia branding on the Williams cars, even during running his own team. Vijay backed out King Fisher from Toyota a year early when he entered his own team into F1.

I think a lot of right things were done in the Lotus team, though the new teams incompetence is what made them look good, as they had seriously little time to prepare for this year.

Really what is stupid here is that the Lotus car manufacturer just doesn't partner up with Tony, or just stay out of F1 and take on the free advertising. For all that might be wrong on Tony's side, buying up Renault is not the answer here. actually that is one of the dumber moves they could have made.

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11-20-2010, 09:15 PM
Post: #9
RE: Lotus name struggle.
the counter-argument relayed by yaaay doesn't hold water for me. chapman formed the car maker, the f1 team, and other sub-companies as well. at some point the f1 team was splintered off from the rest of the lotus group, and tony bought the team while group lotus still has the rest. how does that make tony's team illegitimate? all he's doing with the lotus brand is running an f1 team. he's not selling lotus cars or offering lotus engineering services. if group lotus didn't want someone else running an f1 team under the lotus name, they shouldn't have split it off the company in the first place. if they wanted to stop tony, they should have bought the team back from hunt before tony did.

(11-20-2010 08:01 PM)Yaaay Wrote:  Fernandes broke the licensing agreements with Lotus and caused this mess

i would still love to get some detail on that accusation. i've seen no explanation, let alone evidence, from group lotus on this. tony was rather dismissive of that part of it, but i don't want to just take his word for it.

(11-20-2010 08:43 PM)Baumgartnerfan Wrote:  Really what is stupid here is that the Lotus car manufacturer just doesn't partner up with Tony, or just stay out of F1 and take on the free advertising. For all that might be wrong on Tony's side, buying up Renault is not the answer here. actually that is one of the dumber moves they could have made.

i agree with this 100%.
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11-20-2010, 10:32 PM
Post: #10
RE: Lotus name struggle.
I think there is more Malaysian politics behind this than anything else. While Fernandes is Malaysian he is not Bumi.

This would exacerbate the depth of the issue between himself and the state owned Proton, particularly as he was able to succeed in obtaining the Team Lotus brand while the the state owned group had been unsuccessful. This is much like sticking up your index finger to the Malaysian ruling class. Fernandes has already done this on several fronts with Air Asia, Tune Air and the Tune Hotel group.

Fernandes might win legally but he will burn many bridges in Malaysia and they will actively work to destroy him. Just ask Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim

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11-21-2010, 04:26 AM
Post: #11
RE: Lotus name struggle.
(11-20-2010 10:32 PM)leonbray Wrote:  I think there is more Malaysian politics behind this than anything else. While Fernandes is Malaysian he is not Bumi.

This would exacerbate the depth of the issue between himself and the state owned Proton, particularly as he was able to succeed in obtaining the Team Lotus brand while the the state owned group had been unsuccessful. This is much like sticking up your index finger to the Malaysian ruling class. Fernandes has already done this on several fronts with Air Asia, Tune Air and the Tune Hotel group.

What has he done with the tune group to piss the government off? And before all this, was Proton actively looking into getting into F1, and Tony tricked them by getting in early?

This would make more sense to me if Proton was just suing them for illegally using their name for financial gain, but seems like they are just planning to buy into an existing team (one of the more expensive ones I'm guessing). And causing fan confusion and probably making the legal case a lot more difficult.

I'm not saying Tony is all innocent in this. There might be a business motive behind resurging the Lotus name, and it is a bit suss, that the biggest Malaysian company involved in F1 is backing Mercedes. Still can't see on the surface what this is about. Tony looks like a rich F1 fan.

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11-21-2010, 04:51 AM
Post: #12
RE: Lotus name struggle.
i doubt anyone in f1 has truly clean hands. it's a very dirty business. it was quite slippery of tony to purchase team lotus from hunt while operating under a license from group lotus.

i would really like to know exactly what caused this whole problem. did tony realize group lotus was pulling the plug on the license and then go buy team lotus? did group lotus hear of tony's purchase and, not wanting to fall out of f1, then go and talk to renault? were both sides in a dispute about something else (control, money, whatever) and both took their hostile actions simultaneously?
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11-21-2010, 05:27 AM (This post was last modified: 11-21-2010 05:34 AM by leonbray.)
Post: #13
RE: Lotus name struggle.
You need to understand the background of the personalities, the Malaysian State titles system and Bumi politics to understand how Fernandes could easily upset the establishment by being successful.

Tony is a successful Malaysian but he is not Bumi. He has out maneuvered several traditional Malaysian opponents in setting up Air Asia, getting some lucrative Air Malaysia routes opened up to competition and he has done it politically.

Tall poppy syndrome is alive and well in Malaysia, just ask the previous head of Proton Tuanku Mahaleel, a hereditary Lord and the guy who set up the Lotus deal http://www.malaysiakini.com/letters/38323

Fernandes was already thinking about going elsewhere for the Lotus brand in 2009

Quote:Fernandes: Well, someone from Litespeed approached us and Kamarudin (AirAsia deputy chief executive Datuk Kamarudin Meranun) and I had already been thinking about it for a while. We were going to buy Williams, but then that fell through and we looked at Brawn. So, when this proposal came along, I went and spoke to Syed Zainal (Proton managing director Datuk Syed Zainal Abidin Syed Tahir) and I asked him if Lotus would support this. I said to him that without the Lotus Group's support, it would be stupid for us to go and buy the Lotus name from somebody else (Proton owns Lotus). Lotus were very supportive, provided me and Kamarudin were involved, and it just went from there.

http://findarticles.com/p/news-articles/...n44457322/

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11-23-2010, 10:25 AM
Post: #14
RE: Lotus name struggle.
As far as I can tell the big problem/change is the massive change in management at Lotus. It's been filled with a load of ex-Ferrari people who are trying to change in into a British Ferrari including all the branding, merchandise stores etc that comes with that. There is more to it than that and a lot of politics in the background.

I can understand why they want complete control over the brand, it makes sense with their aims as the F1 team will be one of the highest profile instances of the name worldwide. I just don't like the way it is all being done. It would make more sense for the far group to partner up with Fernandes and use it as a fantastic opportunity for cheap marketing.

I've said it elsewhere, I think Lotus could be gone for good in a few years. The markets they are aiming for are all going to be hard to crack and I don't think they have the reputation to do it. They are targeting:

Porsche Boxter/Cayman
Porsche 911
Ferrari F455
Aston Martin Rapide
Ferrari California

It makes no sense to try this in 5 years. Nobody has taken a convincing chunk out of Porsche and Lotus won't have the build quality image of Porsche. Customers that buy a Boxter expect to be able to drive it every day for years with no major trouble, who would buy a Lotus and expect the same? Even with a new image, it won't have the history for customers to trust it will be bullet proof like a Boxter. The 911 is exactly the same. Anything that competes against a Ferrari is going to have a hard time in terms of performance and badge recognition, Lotus just isn't a brand that people pay £100+ for. It's the same with Aston Martin, you just don't put the two brands together, plus I don't think there is much profit in the 6 figure 4 door market anyway without trying to compete against the established names.

If this succeeds it will be the biggest automotive magic act ever.
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11-26-2010, 05:42 PM
Post: #15
RE: Lotus name struggle.
Just watched a video of LA Autoshow and they have a set of Lotus driver's helmets on display

In the interview the head CEO of Lotus, Danny Bahar stated that they didn't have much head room to manage a Formula 1 entry in 2012.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5xpkXYvNRlE

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11-30-2010, 12:52 PM
Post: #16
RE: Lotus name struggle.
http://www.jamesallenonf1.com/2010/11/te...confirmed/

Lotus (Tony Fernandes Lotus) are officially entered in 2011 as Team Lotus
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11-30-2010, 01:22 PM
Post: #17
RE: Lotus name struggle.
I hope so, but Saward was less positive.

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11-30-2010, 01:46 PM
Post: #18
RE: Lotus name struggle.
I wonder how easy it is to change the name (i.e. more than adding a sponsor) when the entry has been made officially.
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11-30-2010, 02:23 PM
Post: #19
RE: Lotus name struggle.
They have to have the unanimous agreement of all the other teams. Without that they have to make a new entry and therefore loose all accumulated TV money and start from the back.

Lotus would loose about 10 million, Renault a lot more.

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11-30-2010, 02:38 PM
Post: #20
RE: Lotus name struggle.
So if Renault want to become Lotus Renault they have to get the approval of last years top 10....that's handy for Team Lotus having the ability to stop it.

Lotus would actually get more money, 10th spot gets $9.6M but is tier 2, 11-13 get $10M but are Tier 3. Tier 2 get voting rights I think and 3 years in the top 10 gets you Tier 1 which is much more money.

Renault would loose a lot though and I think the other teams would get to share it among them.
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11-30-2010, 04:58 PM
Post: #21
RE: Lotus name struggle.
That is my understanding, although I don;t fully understand it, just pick up stuff along the way. Of course there are so many back room deals we will never know about. The "new" teams are still getting some sort of bung instead of the old £34 million bond they used to have to deposit.

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11-30-2010, 05:59 PM
Post: #22
RE: Lotus name struggle.
It also sounds like Lotus and Lotus have been told to find a way to work together. So maybe it will quietly disappear. I doubt it though. It would be so much better if the car company got on board with Fernandes, plus it must be significantly more cost effective.
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12-01-2010, 06:16 AM
Post: #23
RE: Lotus name struggle.
(11-30-2010 05:59 PM)chemics Wrote:  It also sounds like Lotus and Lotus have been told to find a way to work together.

From Fernandes' Twitter:
Well we made the call after tremendous support from public. Team lotus it is. Sure there will be many battles ahead but higham is pumped.

Looks to me like he is expecting trouble from Lotus Group.
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12-01-2010, 06:53 AM
Post: #24
RE: Lotus name struggle.
Good man, I love them more than ever.

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12-01-2010, 09:05 AM
Post: #25
RE: Lotus name struggle.
(12-01-2010 06:53 AM)Yaaay Wrote:  Good man, I love them more than ever.

+1

It's good that he has the fans backing as well, even if Group Lotus were to win they certainly wouldn't enamour themselves to the people they want to support the team.
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