Group Lotus CEO Dany Bahar has hinted that the company could elect to build its own F1 engine in the coming years having moved into the sport with the Renault team.

The decision to enter F1 is the latest step in an extensive motor sport programme for Lotus, which has included the development of new GT cars, a prototype programme and the announcement that the company will develop an engine to be used in the IndyCar Series from 2012 onwards.

While the newly-formed Lotus Renault GP team is currently committed to using Renault engines, Bahar refused to rule out the possibility of Lotus building an engine in its own right.

However, he admits that it would be a more long-term move and isn't something being considered in the near future.

"I think this is a very long way from us," he said. "However, we have plans under way to think about our own engine family in our road car programmes for the future. The fact that we have announced that we will be developing an engine for IndyCar for 2012 shows you already that we are heavily interested in becoming an engine manufacturer with our own brand. We have the capacity. We built and design engines for other OEMs, so there is no reason why we cannot design and build engines for ourselves.

"Once you commit to motor racing, you have to go all the way up. I don't want to rule this out - but this is way ahead of us and not an issue at the moment."