Renault's future in F1 is set to become clearer today when the team appears before the FIA World Motor Sport Council over the race fixing allegations from the 2008 Singapore Grand Prix.
The regie has already announced that it will not contest the charge levied against it after former driver Nelson Piquet Jr revealed that he had been ordered to crash deliberately in order to force a Safety Car period – which allowed team-mate Fernando Alonso to climb up the order after an early pitstop and put the Spaniard in the mix for victory.
Alonso duly took the first ever win in an F1 night race, but following Piquet's acrimonious departure from the team, allegations were then raised about the incident that had occurred on the street circuit.
Although both Flavio Briatore and Pat Symonds have left the team in the past week as the fall-out from the incident begins, Renault has still to discover its fate from the governing body, which will meet in Paris to decide on a penalty.
The team could face exclusion from the sport, although a more likely outcome is believed to be a suspended ban and a hefty fine – as was the case with McLaren when it faced spying charges two years ago.
With F1 having already lost two manufacturers in the shape of Honda and BMW, the loss of another manufacturer would be a blow to the sport, with Red Bull team boss Christian Horner admitting that it would be 'disastrous' for F1 if the FIA elected to throw Renault out.
"For F1, it would be disastrous to lose a team and, in our case, an engine supplier," he told BBC Sport
. "The FIA has all the information to hand. I'm sure they'll act responsibly.
"Renault have been a very strong engine supplier to Red Bull for the last three years. Hopefully a sensible solution can be found. It would be a great shame to lose Renault from F1 because of an unfortunate incident such as this one."
Piquet has already been granted immunity from prosecution for uncovering the incident, while Alonso is also expected to not face any punishment as he is believed to have had no knowledge of what was occurring within the team during the race.
The outcome of the hearing is expected to have a major impact on other teams aside from Renault, with Red Bull yet to decide on its engine supply for next season, and Williams having also been linked to a possible switch to Renault power for next year.
The driver market is also on hold, with the outcome of the hearing set to help decide the future of a number of leading drivers in the field.