Mercedes-Benz Motorsport has agreed a deal with Formula E to reserve a slot on the grid for season five of the championship.
Head of Mercedes Motorsport Toto Wolff and Formula E Chief Executive Alejandro Agag signed the agreement which will allow Mercedes to choose whether they want to enter the all-electric series closer to the time.
The 2018-19 season will see the series use just one car per race, rather than the two currently needed to complete a race distance.
There will also be a maximum of twelve entries allowed, but with the ten current Formula E teams expected to continue, it leaves only two available slots.
That has led to this deal being put in place, to guarantee that a company of Mercedes’ size could have one of the two places on the grid should they choose to enter.
Speaking about the deal, Toto Wolff said that he expects Formula E to be increasingly relevant in future years.
He commented, “We have been watching the growth of Formula E with great interest.”
“At the current time, we are looking at all the options available in the future of motor racing, and we are very pleased with an agreement that secures us an opportunity to enter the series in season five.”
“Electrification will play a major role in the future of the automotive industry – racing has always been a technology R&D platform for the motor industry, and this will make Formula E very relevant in the future.”
Mercedes are one of a host of major manufacturers to declare their interest in the sport, with Jaguar, Audi and BMW joining Citroen DS and Renault in having an active role in the sport.
This, according to Agag, speaks volumes for the strength of series. “We are delighted to confirm that we have reserved one of our two new entries in season five for MGP,” he said.
“Formula E wants to become the platform where car manufacturers test and develop the technologies that they will then introduce on their road cars.”
“Having the chance to include a brand like Mercedes in our championship in the future would be a major boost to achieve that objective.”
“Formula E is becoming an exciting mix of consolidated manufacturers like Renault, Citroen-DS, Audi, Mahindra or Jaguar, and new futuristic brands like Faraday Future, NextEV, or the likes of major component manufacturers like Schaeffler and ZF.”
“Mercedes would be a great addition to that growing line-up.”