Mercedes boss Toto Wolff has dismissed suggestions his side will gain any political advantage from its new Formula 1 engine deal with McLaren.

McLaren will return to being a Mercedes customer once its current Renault power unit supply deal expires at the end of the 2020 F1 season, having penned a four-year deal to rekindle its former partnership that brought the Woking squad much success.

Asked how the deal will affect the political landscape of the sport, Wolff replied: “I think the argument of having an additional power unit supplier isn’t valid anymore in this day and age.

“Every team needs to look out for their own advantage, bearing in mind in the greater scheme of things that we want to have an attractive show.

“It’s clear that when the discussion is about power units, our customers will listen to what our opinion is, but I haven’t seen any power unit customer that was dealing on eye level with the supplier to having their hand tweaked when it comes to chassis regulations.

“I can clearly say that I’m not expecting McLaren, nor do I expect Racing Point or Williams to ever decide against what their priorities are.

“The rational for the deal was not an influence but the rational for the deal was a commercial background to increase our earnings at HPP and benefit from the learning of running the engines in four different teams.”

And Renault team principal Cyril Abiteboul insists losing McLaren does not “change anything” from a political standpoint for the French manufacturer.

“Maybe the problem is that we are a bit too naïve in the sport, but we never use engine suppliers as a way to influence control over teams,” he explained.

“So this doesn’t change anything and the number of time we have seen McLaren or Red Bull or Toro Rosso voting in a completely different way to what we are thinking, again it doesn’t remove anything.”

 

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