Mercedes announced its departure from Formula E as a team entrant and manufacturer at the end of Season 8, i.e in August 2022.
Ever since HWA Racelab entered Formula E in Season 5, Mercedes already kick-started its journey in the all-electric championship. Its formal entry took place in Season 6 and they made immediate impact, finishing sixth in the teams’ standings.
They carried its form into Season 7, where they not only secured the teams’ title, but helped Nyck de Vries to the drivers’ title, in already their second year in Formula E. While they had on-track success, the decision on future remained a question mark.
Some reports suggested that it will pull out already at the end of the current season, but Mercedes has since confirmed that they will bow out after the end of Season 8. The decision is due to its company’s plan of full fleet of electric cars by the end of the decade.
The resources from Formula E will be put towards that and also the three electric models/architeture, which will be launched by 2025. Going ahead, Mercedes will focus its motorsport activities on F1 – using that platform for its automotive fleet.
That learning will be utilised on product architectures like the AMG.EA platform and projects such as the Vision EQXX. Mercedes, meanwhile, is already exploring options for the team to continue beyond Season 8 at the hands of new owners.
Upon the announcement, Markus Schafer, said: “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.” At the same time, Ian James, Team Principal, Mercedes-EQ Formula E Team, added: “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.”
And finally, Toto Wolff, Head of Mercedes-Benz Motorsport & CEO, Mercedes-EQ Formula E Team, stated: “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.”