Capito remains coy on Renault engine speculation

Mark Scott
Williams CEO Jost Capito interviewed in Barcelona. February 2022

Williams boss Jost Capito fields questions in the paddock. February 2022

Williams boss Jost Capito would not be drawn on speculation linking the team with a deal to be powered by Renault engines in future.

The Renault engine only powers one team, Alpine, on the current Formula 1 grid having lost Red Bull and AlphaTauri as customer teams at the end of the 2018 campaign.

Senior figures at Alpine have stated their openness to adding a customer team to their ranks again, with one of the main benefits being a significant increase in available data with more cars clocking up the miles to provide more valuable insights into power unit performance and reliability.

Williams, meanwhile, have been powered by Mercedes engines ever since the turbo hybrid era began in 2014, but Mercedes chief Toto Wolff has suggested that the Silver Arrows, “in an ideal world”, would only have two customer teams instead of the three they currently have in Williams, McLaren and Aston Martin.

That has since fuelled speculation that Williams could be the team to move away from the Mercedes pool, but Capito has said there is still a long way to go before the team’s current agreement with the Silver Arrows expires.

“It’s all speculation at the moment,” Capito said, as quoted by

“We have a contract with Mercedes until the end of 2025, and there will be new regulations in 2026.

“A lot of water will flow down the Rhine before then.”

Williams have been powered before by Renault, firstly from 1989 to 1997 in a partnership which resulted in four Drivers’ Championships and five Constructors’ title, and then a brief reunion followed in 2012 and 2013.

That didn’t result in any Drivers’ or Constructors’ titles being added to the Williams trophy cabinet, but it did provide us with that glorious win for Pastor Maldonado at the 2012 Spanish Grand Prix – still the last time Williams have been on the top step of the podium.

Speculation also continues to surround Williams and their driver line-up, not just for 2023, but for the remainder of this season as well.

Underperforming Nicholas Latifi is under immense pressure to retain his seat, with Alpine reserve driver Oscar Piastri champing at the bit for his first Formula 1 opportunity having won the Formula 2 title in 2021.