- Mercedes-EQ’s Ian James to remain team principal
- McLaren already competes in F1, IndyCar, Extreme E and esports
British motorsport outfit McLaren Racing have confirmed they will enter the all-electric Formula E series next season after acquiring the Mercedes-EQ team.
Woking-based McLaren had signed an option in January 2021 to join Formula E from the 2022/23 campaign.
Zak Brown, chief executive of McLaren Racing, later confirmed last December the organisation would likely make a decision on its entry in early 2022.
Reports then emerged in February that Mercedes-EQ, who are leaving Formula E at the end of 2021/22, were in talks with McLaren to form a unified team entry.
With the deal confirmed and expected to be completed later this year, McLaren will retain Mercedes-EQ team principal Ian James in his current role.
The move continues McLaren’s commitment to electric motorsport, having entered the SUV series Extreme E in 2022. McLaren also participates in Formula One, IndyCar and esports.
“McLaren Racing always seeks to compete against the best and on the leading edge of technology, providing our fans, partners and people with new ways to be excited, entertained and inspired. Formula E, like all our racing series, fulfils all those criteria,” said Brown.
“As with all forms of the sport we participate in, Formula E has racing at the centre but will be strategically, commercially and technically additive to McLaren Racing overall. It is also satisfying to provide a home for the class-leading Formula E team that Mercedes has built, which will become a fully-fledged part of the McLaren Racing family.
“While run separately to our Formula One and IndyCar teams, Formula E complements and builds out our EV racing programme alongside Extreme E.
“I firmly believe that Formula E will give McLaren Racing a competitive advantage through greater understanding of EV racing, while providing a point of difference to our fans, partners and people, and continuing to drive us along our sustainability pathway.”
James added: “Becoming part of the McLaren Racing family is a privilege: McLaren has always been synonymous with success and high-performance. This is a great moment for all parties involved but, above all, for the people that make up this team.”
He continued: “I’m very much looking forward for this next chapter for the team and will be a proud member of it in Season 9. Until then, we will be focused on delivering the best results possible as the Mercedes-EQ Formula E Team, for the remainder of the current season.”