Mercedes-Benz to leave DTM for Formula E
Mercedes-Benz has announced that it will leave the DTM championship at the end of 2018 in order to join Formula E in the 2019/20 season.
This repositioning of its motorsport activities will see Mercedes competing in both Formula 1, the pinnacle of motorsport, and in Formula E, which embodies the transformation underway in the automotive industry.
“Our years in the DTM will always be held high as a major chapter in the motorsport history of Mercedes,” commented Toto Wolff, the head of Mercedes-Benz Motorsport. “I want to thank every team member whose fantastic work has helped to make Mercedes-Benz the most successful DTM manufacturer during that time. Although leaving is tough for all of us, we will be doing everything during this season and next to make sure we win as many DTM titles as possible before we go. We owe that to our fans and to ourselves.”
Electric mobility is already of strategic importance to the company today, and this will only increase in the future. Formula E offers a perfect platform on which to demonstrate the competitiveness of our technology brand, EQ, in a racing environment, in the area of battery electric powertrains.
“Mercedes-Benz will market future battery powered electric vehicles using the EQ label,” explained Dr Jens Thiemer the vice president of marketing at Mercedes-Benz. “Formula E is a significant step in order to demonstrate the performance of our attractive battery powered electric vehicles, as well as giving an emotional spin to our EQ technology brand through motorsport and marketing.”
Toto Wolff views Formula E as a brand new form of racing that reflects a rapidly changing automotive landscape.
“In motorsport like in every other area, we want to be the benchmark in the premium segment and to explore innovative new projects. The combination of Formula 1 and Formula E delivers that. Formula E is like an exciting start-up venture: it offers a brand new format, combining racing with a strong event character, in order to promote current and future technologies. Electrification is happening in the road car world and Formula E offers manufacturers an interesting platform to bring this technology to a new audience – and to do so with a completely new kind of racing, different to any other series. I am pleased that we were able to extend our entry option for one year to the 2019/20 season. This gives us time to properly understand the series and to prepare for our entry in the right way.”