Renault says it has been given clearance to run its current livery in next weekend's Canadian Grand Prix by the Quebec authorities after discussion over whether it complied with the region's anti-tobacco legislation.
As part of Renault's title sponsorship deal with Group Lotus, the team carries a black and gold color scheme inspired by the original Lotus Formula 1 team's 1970s and '80s livery, when the team was backed by cigarette brand John Player Special. Although JPS does not feature anywhere on the 2011 Renault, there were concerns that the color scheme still carried implicit tobacco overtones.
Team boss Eric Boullier said the Quebec officials had accepted that the 2011 livery had no tobacco connection.
"We're delighted to be able to race in Montreal in our usual color scheme," he said. "The Quebec authorities noted that the current livery makes a reference to images from the 1980s when the car was sponsored by the tobacco industry, but it has also accepted the fact that Lotus Renault GP receives no direct or indirect financing from the industry in question. We would like to thank them for acknowledging our good faith.
"We are fully aware of the stringent restrictions imposed by the law in Quebec on promotional associations with tobacco. As a result, we will use all means available to dispel any misconceptions that our identity and that of our partners is somehow associated with this industry."
Even so, a Renault statement left the door open to livery adjustments for next season's Montreal race.
"The team has agreed to work with the Quebec authorities on a more noticeable way to keep complying with the local legislation in 2012," it said.