Ron Dennis insists parting is amicable - and on McLaren's terms
16 April 2010

McLaren boss Ron Dennis has revealed that his team initiated the split from Mercedes-Benz, not the car maker.

Dennis, whose team will still be running Mercedes engines until the end of the 2011 season, added that the split between the two was "completely and utterly amicable".

Mercedes-Benz bought a 40 per cent share in McLaren in 2006 and Dennis says the company made its interest in taking over the F1 team clear on many occasions.

"They continuously over the years wanted to have control of McLaren and we continuously told them we did not want them to have control of McLaren,” Dennis told Arabian Business magazine.

"The more they wanted it, the less we wanted to give it to them. Because you look at what happens... the influence they [car manufacturers] control is not always productive. CEOs change overnight.

"I have got 30-odd years of my life in this company, huge quantities of friends and people who have been through thick and thin with me, and I made it very clear to Mercedes-Benz, as did the other shareholders, that we are not for sale. They hankered always."

Mercedes instead took over the Brawn GP team at the end of last season.

"We initiated it, we wanted to be independent," said Dennis. "This wasn't something which we weren't party to. I mean engine supply to Brawn in 2008 [for the 2009 season] required our consent.

"At the end of the day we were a fully integrated partner of Mercedes-Benz, and we still are. We are fiercely competitive on circuit, but off circuit we are still firm friends."

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16 April 2010

[quote Autocar]I made it very clear to Mercedes-Benz... ...that we are not for sale. [/quote]

Really? You were happy to take their money and sell them 40%.

16 April 2010

[quote IainStirling]Really? You were happy to take their money and sell them 40%.[/quote]
Not incompatible with not being for sale...

16 April 2010

OK, both parties could have changed their plans in the period after 2006, but he really should have made it clear to Merc when he sold the 40% that he was not willing to sell a controlling stake.

It's a bit like agreeing to sell someone your garage, a bedroom and the utility room. Then not finishing the deal later to allow the person to have the whole house to use. (Well, sort of.)

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