Berger says BMW decision on F1 coming soon

Gerhard Berger told Austrian television yesterday that BMW will make a decision about the future in the next six weeks. The company is trying to decide whether or not to build its own cars when its current deal with Williams expires at the end of 2004. Berger, who is believed to be in favour of a BMW team, said that if that decision was made he would definitely stay in his current job but otherwise may retire. Berger said that BMW had already built the best F1 engine and that continuing to be just as engine supplier would not be such an interesting project for him.

With or without Berger, BMW has a difficult decision to make. Committing to a long-term F1 project - particularly because of the political instability in F1 and the uncertainty over the future of the sport beyond 2008 - would seem to be a rather risky business for BMW as the company could not hope to be fully competitive until 2008 (just as the problems could begin). The company is traditionally fairly conservative and so the impression at the moment is that it will decide to do a new deal with Williams.

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