Renault CEO and Chairman Carlos Ghosn says is open to the idea of approaching Fernando Alonso to re-join the team he won his two F1 world titles with, but says he will not push for it.
The French firm will return to F1 as a constructor in 2016 after purchasing the Lotus F1 Team, its first fully-fledged manufacturer effort since 2009 having focused its attentions as an engine supplier in recent seasons.
Though Renault has set itself modest targets initially with a relatively inexperienced driver line-up of Kevin Magnussen and Jolyon Palmer, it says it is keen to put the resource behind the effort to ensure it eventually returns to championship glory, a decade on from the back-to-back titles it achieved with Alonso in 2005 and 2006.
Indeed, Ghosn says he is open to the suggestion of approaching a high-profile driver like Alonso once again, but is happy to delegate that responsibility to the Renault Sport F1 management team of Frederic Vasseur and Cyril Abiteboul.
“Of course I would like [to sign him] but it is not my responsibility, it is the Formula 1 team who has that responsibility and support their decisions," he told Sky Sports F1
"During these years in Formula 1 we have made many friends, we have met many talented young drivers and Fernando is one of the most talented. He is definitely one of the best drivers of the current Formula 1."
Alonso left Renault at the end of his second title-winning season in 2006, but returned in 2008 after a high-profile 2007 spat with the McLaren team and former team-mate Lewis Hamilton. Alonso remained until 2009 when he switched to Ferrari, before rejoining McLaren in 2015 on a reported deal worth £30 million.
The Renault team name has not been seen since 2010, when it sold a large stake in the outfit to Genii Capital, who eventually rebranded it as Lotus. Renault's return comes after it re-purchased the Enstone-based squad over the winter break..