Last weekend, the Mercedes-EQ won both the Teams’ and Drivers’ Champion in the fifteenth and final race of the 2020-2021 Formula E season. Just a few days after, the team now announced that it will be exiting the sport at the end of the Formula E Season 8 in August 2022.
It seems Mercedes is leaving Formula E on a high note.
The reason for the team’s exit in Formula E is quite interesting. Mercedes says they will refocus their efforts into developing battery electric vehicles. At the same time, the automaker will make a push forward in Formula 1.
Mercedes did announce that they plan to go fully electric by the end of 2030 (in some markets), and it’s not an easy task. By reallocating resources and applying the lessons learned from their Formula E championship into their EV program, the automaker can fast track the development and production of new battery-powered models.
“As part of the new strategic direction, the brand has deliberately chosen to shift resources for this accelerated ramp-up of electrification, including the development of three electric-only architectures to be launched in 2025. Therefore, Mercedes will reallocate resources away from its ABB FIA Formula E World Championship program and towards applying the lessons learned in competition to product development in series,” the company said in a statement.
Looking back, it didn’t take long for Mercedes to win the Formula E championship. The HWA Racelab team first joined in season 5, laying the foundations for Mercedes’ entry in the following season. In season 6, Stoffel Vandoorne scored the first Mercedes win in the final round of the season. It was followed by a strong Season 7 performance. Now, they’re the champions.
It’ll be sad to see Mercedes leave Formula E. However, the team’s leadership group has begun exploring options to continue competing in the series after Season 8, including a potential sale to new owners. That said, it’s possible we’ll see the team continue operations as a privateer.