|McLaren entered as a Formula E team from 2023|
McLaren have confirmed they will take over the grid slot currently filled by the Mercedes EQ team and will add Formula E to its substantial portfolio of motorsport programmes. Quoted from the-race.com, Sunday (15/5/2022) the plan is for McLaren to enter as a Formula E team from 2023 onwards. As The Race revealed in February, McLaren will be racing with Nissan's supplied powertrain for at least the first two seasons.
The deal has been slow with first contact being made between Mercedes EQ and McLaren's Zak Brown last February, before Mercedes gave notice of its intention to end its three-season program as a manufacturer. Mercedes EQ team principal Ian James then took the lead in efforts to ensure the team could at least continue into the Gen3 era with a partner. Development of the Gen3 powertrain that will be used by Mercedes was discontinued last October and focus is given to continuing customer-based models for 2023 and beyond.
That prompted Mercedes EQ executives Toto Wolff, Ian James and technical lead Nick Chester to provide wide passes to continue the team's involvement in Formula E. It was then that McLaren Group CEO Zak Brown said he had been watching Formula E closely for some time and was monitoring the series' progress and future direction.
“McLaren Racing has always strived to keep up with the best and at the forefront of technology, giving our fans, partners and people new ways to be excited, entertained and inspired. Formula E, like all of our racing series, meets all of those criteria," said McLaren boss Zak Brown. Meanwhile, Formula E team boss Ian James added, being part of the McLaren Racing family is a privilege.
McLaren has always been synonymous with success and high performance. “I am very much looking forward to the next chapter for this team and will be a proud member of Season 9. Until then, we will focus on delivering the best results as a Mercedes-EQ Formula E Team, for the remainder of the season.” said Ian James.
McLaren will recruit at least one new driver for the 2023 season as The Race reports current Mercedes EQ driver Stoffel Vandoorne has agreed to join the new DS Penske alliance to kick off the Gen 3 era which is expected to kick off next January.