Renault have today joined forces with Ferrari by confirming their intention to withdraw from the 2010 Formula One world championship unless recently-adopted regulations are revised.
Motor sport's world governing body, the FIA, and its president Max Mosley, now face critical showdown talks with all the teams at a Heathrow airport hotel on Friday if they are to save the sport.
Renault president Bernard Rey said: "We remain committed to the sport, however we cannot be involved in a championship operating with different sets of rules, and if such rules are put into effect, we will be forced to pull out at the end of this season."
Mosley is now under serious pressure to revise the rules announced on April 29 following a meeting of the World Motor Sport Council.
The proposed £40million budget cap would introduce a two-tier F1, sparking outrage, with five teams now confirming their intention not to compete from next year.
Ferrari, Toyota, Red Bull Racing, Toro Rosso, and now Renault, are all standing firm in the face of the FIA's policy making.
Renault team boss Flavio Briatore said: "Our aim is to reduce costs while maintaining the high standards that make Formula One one of the most prestigious brands on the market.
"We want to achieve this in a co-ordinated manner with the regulatory and commercial bodies, and we refuse to accept unilateral governance handed out by the FIA.
"If the decisions announced by the World Council on the 29th of April 2009 are not revised, we have no choice but to withdraw from the FIA Formula One World Championship at the end of 2009."
Under Mosley's budget cap plan, designed to attract new teams and curb the costs of the 10 present, there is a choice.
Teams can decide not to be capped, but must adhere to the current regulations, or run with the cap, but enjoy a performance advantage via greater engine and KERS power, as well as aerodynamic aids.
It is understood a flexible rear wing alone, currently outlawed but available to a team next season working within the cap, could lead to a car being two seconds per lap quicker than those without.
Renault, like Ferrari, have also voiced their disgust at what they see as the FIA's failure to discuss the rule changes with all the teams.
In particular, after the Formula One Teams' Association confirmed their own plans earlier this season to reduce costs over a period of time.
A Renault statement read: "There is frustration FOTA's constructive proposals, including major cost-saving measures to be adopted progressively between 2009 and 2012, which were carefully constructed by FOTA members, have been completely ignored without any form of consultation by the FIA with the teams.
"It should be stressed that FOTA has set the same, if not lower, financial objective as the FIA, but Renault strongly believes that this must be introduced through a different procedure agreed by all parties.
"Renault also believes it is paramount that the governance of the sport is co-ordinated with a spirit of consultation with all parties (FIA, FOM, FOTA) in order to achieve a better balance between the costs and the revenues.
"Renault is also of the firm view that all entrants in the world championship must adhere to and operate under the same regulations."
Friday's meeting between Mosley and the teams would now appear to represent a critical juncture for the future of Formula One.
Source : Planet F1