The 2016 season saw Renault return as an F1 works entry following their takeover of the Lotus team - the Enstone-based squad which the French automaker previously ran from 2002 to 2011. It wasn't just the team name that changed: Mercedes engines inevitably made way for Renault’s eponymous power unit, as the new management embarked on a long-term restructuring programme aimed at returning the famous marque to race-winning glory…
A tough year of transition, as the R.S.16 car - originally designed around a Mercedes engine - proves far from competitive in the hands of former McLaren racer Kevin Magnussen and former Lotus tester Jolyon Palmer. Score on just three occasions, with a best of seventh for Magnussen in Russia, and finish a lowly ninth in the final standings.
Final season under Lotus name before Renault takeover. Form much improved over 2014, with the Mercedes-powered E23 accumulating 78 points in the hands of Grosjean and Maldonado, the former’s fine third in Belgium being the team’s best result.
Plummet down the order to eighth overall as team struggle to make E22 and its hybrid Renault power unit reliable or competitive. Grosjean scores eight points and Maldonado just two, with the former's eighth places in Spain and Monaco their best results of the year.