Mercedes Benz announced on Wednesday that they will withdraw from the ABB FIA Formula E world championship following the conclusion of season 8 of the all electric racing championship next August as the company realign to develop electric vehicles.
The news comes just three days after the Mercedes EQ Team won the ABB FIA Formula E manufacturers championship while they also won the drivers championship with Nyck de Vries.
Markus Schäfer, Member of the Board of Management of Daimler AG and Mercedes-Benz AG; responsible for Daimler Group Research and Mercedes-Benz Cars COO:
At Mercedes-Benz, we have committed ourselves to fighting climate change at full force in this decade. This demands the accelerated transformation of our company, products and services towards an emission-free and software-driven future, and to achieve this, we must give full focus to our core activities. In motorsport, Formula E has been a good driver for proving our expertise and establishing our Mercedes-EQ brand, but in future we will keep pushing technological progress – especially on the electric drive side – focusing on Formula One. It is the arena where we constantly test our technology in the most intense competition the automotive world has to offer – and the three-pointed star hardly shines brighter anywhere else. F1 offers rich potential for technology transfer, as we can see in ongoing projects such as the Vision EQXX, and our team and the entire series will achieve net-zero status by the end of the decade.
Bettina Fetzer, Vice President Marketing, Mercedes-Benz AG:
Over the last two years, Formula E has enabled us to showcase the Mercedes-EQ brand in a highly endemic and truly innovative format. On a strategic level, however, Mercedes-AMG will be positioned and strengthened as our performance brand through its close alignment to our record-breaking Formula One team, and F1 will be our company’s works motorsport focus for the years ahead. We wish the Formula E championship, its stakeholders and its innovative format only the best for the future as it continues to grow, and we hope the series has a bright future.
James, Team Principal, Mercedes-EQ Formula E Team:
We have been extremely fortunate to enjoy the support of Mercedes-Benz in building a class-leading Formula E operation over the past few seasons. I would like to thank the company for its trust and support in our journey so far – and all the way through to what we hope will be a successful conclusion to Season 8 with a strong championship challenge. Although Mercedes-Benz has decided to leave, we recognise the value and power of Formula E; therefore, we will be exploring the best options for the team to continue competing beyond Season 8.
Speaking about the announcement Toto Wolff, Head of Mercedes-Benz Motorsport & CEO, Mercedes-EQ Formula E Team commented saying:
We entered Formula E with an open mind about the series and its innovative approach to motorsport. A lot of hard work went into building the team and making it competitive – and we have seen an incredible group of talented women and men deliver at the highest level. We can be proud of our achievements and especially the double world championship won last weekend in Berlin, which will stand as an historic milestone in the long motorsport history of Mercedes-Benz. We will be giving everything to make sure that we finish our Formula E adventure in style in Season 8.