Formula 1 is “in a very fragile state” as a result of the coronavirus crisis and needs big changes to survive, McLaren boss Zak Brown says.
“This is potentially devastating to teams, and if [it is devastating] to enough teams – which doesn’t have to mean more than two – then very threatening to F1 as a whole,” he said.
Cost-saving plans will be discussed at a meeting of F1 bosses on Monday.
But the teams are divided over how best to safeguard the sport.
Brown, speaking in an exclusive interview with BBC Sport, believes the $175m (£143m) budget cap, scheduled to come into force in 2021, needs to be lowered significantly, or the sport risks a potential disaster.
“Could I see – through what is going on right now in the world if we don’t tackle this situation head on very aggressively – two teams disappearing? Yeah,” said Brown, the chief executive officer of McLaren Racing.
“In fact, I could see four teams disappearing if this isn’t handled the right way.
“And then, given how long it takes to ramp up an F1 team, and given the economic and health crisis we are in right now, to think there would be people lined up to take over those teams like there has historically been… I don’t think the timing could be worse from that standpoint.
“So I think F1 is in a very fragile state at the moment.”