McLaren Mercedes MP24 F1 race car

McLaren Mercedes MP24 F1 race car

A spokesman for McLaren insists the team's relationship with engine and equity partner Mercedes-Benz is not set to end. It was reported today that Mercedes, already the supplier of customer engines to Brawn GP, is close to buying into the Brackley based team.

"Both McLaren and Mercedes remain extremely satisfied with our F1 collaboration, which has netted two drivers' world championships and one constructors' world championship as well as dozens of grand prix victories," the spokesman is quoted as saying in a report by the.

McLaren also said it is "supportive" of Mercedes' engine deals with other teams, amid speculation Red Bull is close to signing a deal for German power in 2010.

The spokesman added: "Mercedes’ engine supply contract with McLaren is a very long-standing one--it's in its 15th consecutive year, in fact--and it will continue to run for many years to come."

However, the report cited 'sources' in suggesting that the Red Bull-Mercedes deal may not be completed if the Brawn reports are true.

Sir Frank Williams is on the lookout for a new engine supplier for its Grove based team, and was believed to be first in line for the Renault deal currently in place for Red Bull. If Red Bull however stays with Renault, the fourth Mercedes engine deal would become available. It was reported that Williams was a guest of Mercedes at the Brands Hatch round of the DTM series last weekend.