Mercedes is leaving DTM after 2018, entering Formula E in 2019
Mercedes-Benz has announced that it will leave DTM at the end of the 2018 to reposition its motorsport commitments to another major racing competition, the FIA Formula E Championship. The German premium brand will enter Formula E in Season 6 (2019/2020).
Mercedes-Benz was a regular entrant in the “new” DTM since 2000, scoring numerous victories against other German brands (Audi, Opel, BMW). Since 2000, Mercedes earned nine manufacturer titles, the last one in 2010, and seven championship titles for drivers – Bernd Schneider (four times), Paul di Resta, Gary Paffett and Pascal Wehrlein.
In total, since the DTM was founded in 1988, there have been 26 racing seasons during which Mercedes-Benz has won 10 drivers’ titles and celebrated 183 race wins, 128 pole positions and 540 podium finishes.
“Our years in the DTM will always be held high as a major chapter in the motorsport history of Mercedes. 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,” commented Toto Wolff, the CEO of Mercedes AMG F1.
The ITR, as the organiser and promoter of the DTM, regrets this step by Mercedes, respecting the decision in a sporting and fair way. Mercedes has announced its withdrawal at the end of the 2018 season well in advance, so that gives the ITR the time to analyse the situation and to prepare a sustainable concept for the future.
“Today is a great day as we welcome Mercedes to the Formula E family – adding to the increasing number of manufacturers joining the electric revolution. This step shows how much the world is changing, not only in motorsport, but the whole automotive industry. We’re witnessing a transformation that will first change our cities, and then our roads. Formula E is the championship that embodies that change, and together with all our teams and manufacturers we’ll keep pushing for technologies to have better and more affordable electric cars,” said Formula E Founder and CEO Alejandro Agag.