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Lotus F1 team lost £57 million in 2015

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The Lotus F1 team lost £57 million in 2015 before it was taken over by Renault, according to recently published reports.

Lotus' financial struggles in the latter part of last season were well documented until its sale was completed on December 18 for "a consideration of £1". The 2015 figure -- which was officially £56.994m -- is a massive change from 2014, when the company lost just £5.8m.

Turnover also fell by £36.6m from £114.7m to £78.4m, which the team said was primarily due to "a reduction in sponsorship for the year". The cost of sales fell by £11m.

Renault points to this financial "handicap" as a reason for its slow start to life back as a manufacturer since the takeover and believes there will be an upswing in performance after the summer break.

The team said: "The company's strategy for 2016 is to reconstruct the company with the right level of spend, investment and new working practices to reflect Renault's long term sporting ambitions and strict business plan.

"On track, improved performance is expected to be achieved in the second half of the season. However, due to the handicap resulting from the lack of development during the 2015 season, the team do not expect to improve upon the prior year's championship position."

The report also recognises the deals Renault has in place to supply engines to Red Bull and Toro Rosso for both 2017 and 2018.