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McLaren are joining Formula E


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#1 SophieB

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Posted 14 May 2022 - 06:41

@autosport
 McLaren will join #FormulaE for the 2022-23 season, with a purchase of Mercedes' entry set to be completed
https://t.co/NQnMlx60ka

 

 

 

This expands the British team's reach in electric motorsport, following its decision to join the Extreme E series for this year. It had already signed an option deal to enter Formula E for the championship's ninth season, which it has completed on by purchasing the Mercedes squad.

The Formula E team will join McLaren's Formula 1 team and Arrow McLaren SP IndyCar team under the McLaren Racing umbrella.

Current Mercedes team principal Ian James will remain on board to lead the Formula E team, as the deal for Mercedes to relinquish control of the squad will be completed later in the year.

 



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#2 Ben1445

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Posted 14 May 2022 - 06:46

https://www.mclaren....-e-season-nine/

 

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Edited by Ben1445, 14 May 2022 - 06:47.


#3 thegamer23

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Posted 14 May 2022 - 06:47

Another huge name joining the serie, makes sense as they're already competing in Extreme E as well

Next season is going to be awesome with the new car, new teams, new faces.

Ronsenqvist rumored to switch back from Indy to Formula E.

.


Edited by thegamer23, 14 May 2022 - 07:00.


#4 Ben1445

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Posted 14 May 2022 - 07:04

Well, that's been a long rumoured move - glad to see it confirmed. 

 

I remain impressed with Zak Brown's approach to facilitate team and driver cross over between different championships and categories. I think motorsport is all the richer for it. 



#5 H0R

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Posted 14 May 2022 - 07:14

Long overdue decision. I always felt that considering their aim for sustainability made Mclaren belong to FE.



#6 Ben1445

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Posted 14 May 2022 - 07:20

I was a little surprised when they announced their Extreme E entry, especially when things went a bit quiet over their Formula E plans. 

 

But I think Formula E's cost-cap agreement late last year was pretty crucial, and the sudden availability of a World Championship winning team for purchase was probably too good an opportunity to miss. 



#7 Ben1445

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Posted 14 May 2022 - 07:24

Zak Brown, CEO, McLaren Racing, said:

“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.

“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 F1 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.”



#8 Disgrace

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Posted 14 May 2022 - 07:25

Make that Sir Zak Brown.



#9 Mat13

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Posted 14 May 2022 - 07:54

That’s a shame- I’d rather they joined WEC.

#10 Ben1445

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Posted 14 May 2022 - 07:56

So who do they pull in as drivers then? Vandoorne is apparently leaving the soon-to-be-McLaren operation to join the reported DS-Dragon pairing whilst De Vries is rumoured to be prioritising a Toyota WEC campaign. 

 

The Rosenqvist rumour comes about presumably from some poor results in IndyCar and former success in Formula E, which he said was 'unfinished business' when he went stateside. 



#11 frosty125

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Posted 14 May 2022 - 08:02

I think the portfolio approach makes sense for McLaren and there must be efficiency in Marketing, HR, OD, Finance, Administration etc.

It makes McLaren Racing more resilient.

#12 Ben1445

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Posted 14 May 2022 - 08:09

That’s a shame- I’d rather they joined WEC.

I guess there's no major reason they couldn't yet do that too? 



#13 RSRally

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Posted 14 May 2022 - 08:29

Will they keep the FE base at Brackley? In a way, rather a shame the decision didn't come earlier and Merc could have continued as a powertrain supplier to make a Mclaren-Mercedes FE team.

Maybe DeVries will stay on? Sounding less likely he's going stateside now and keen to stay in Europe.

#14 Ben1445

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Posted 14 May 2022 - 08:38

Will they keep the FE base at Brackley? In a way, rather a shame the decision didn't come earlier and Merc could have continued as a powertrain supplier to make a Mclaren-Mercedes FE team.


Seems like they'll be close by but not at the Mercedes site. 
 

James talks of “stability and continuity” which made completely uprooting team staff again was a major concern for the new McLaren flavoured entity. That is why a once mooted possibility of integrating fully into Woking was discounted earlier this year.

“We’ve already done it once moving the vast majority of the team from Germany over to the UK, it would be a bit unfair to uproots again in such a short space of time,” added James.

“We won’t be on the same site (Brackley), because obviously there are various sensitivities around IP and all the rest of it, but we won’t be far away.”



#15 Ben1445

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Posted 14 May 2022 - 09:13

Maybe DeVries will stay on? Sounding less likely he's going stateside now and keen to stay in Europe.

If he has already signed with Toyota, I'm wondering if this depends on the level of overlap between the 2023 WEC and FE race calendars.



#16 Ben1445

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Posted 14 May 2022 - 11:13

McLaren entry a "huge rebound" for Formula E - Agag
https://www.motorspo...-agag/10304299/

 

"I think it says a lot [about the strength of the championship]," Agag said.

"A few months ago, sadly, we lost a couple of manufacturers. You know how motorsport is when you lose the manufacturers, it seems that it is the end of the world and the whole thing is going to end in tears.

"Formula 1 had it at the time, I remember when BMW, Toyota, all these guys at the end of the decade of the 2000 suddenly left and looked like it would.

"So we had a little bit of that about a year ago. And there were a lot of comments, like 'What is this?' 'What's happening?'

"Definitely, this is a huge, I would call it rebound. With Maserati, with Abt and now with McLaren, I think it's great.

"It shows the strength of Formula E as the pinnacle of electric motor racing. And it shows that Gen3, which is a huge step forward, has the best actors ready to compete in the championship."


Also some comments from FE's CEO Jamie Reigle with some level of honesty about how they responded: 
 

"The narrative a year ago was 'what's happening with Formula E?', "is the sport credible?' and 'it seems kind of expensive relative to, the output you're generating from a marketing perspective'.

"So we spent a lot of time in the last 12-18 months trying to address those vulnerabilities: new qualifying format, improving the sporting format, we launched the Gen3 car a couple of weeks ago in Monaco, and the performance characteristics that car pretty spectacular. I think we show that we belong on those big stages.

"We're offering a different proposition. And then the business case: we put the cost cap in place, which should allow the teams competitive balance in that, but it also means they should be able to generate a return to grow the championship.

"So that's all great, and I can say that, but what you need is validation. Bringing Maserati and McLaren in, when we drew up our list with Alejandro a year or two ago, in the depths of those who had exited we said 'who's top of the page?'

"McLaren is top of the page, Maserati's top of the page. So we're really excited to have them."



#17 Ben1445

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Posted 14 May 2022 - 11:20

Some unofficial livery renders by Chris Paul Design

 

image.jpg

image.jpg



#18 juicy sushi

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Posted 14 May 2022 - 11:31

So who do they pull in as drivers then? Vandoorne is apparently leaving the soon-to-be-McLaren operation to join the reported DS-Dragon pairing whilst De Vries is rumoured to be prioritising a Toyota WEC campaign.

The Rosenqvist rumour comes about presumably from some poor results in IndyCar and former success in Formula E, which he said was 'unfinished business' when he went stateside.

I would seriously be calling Vettel, to see if Gen3 interests him. Give him some sim time and see if he’s interested. Failing him, Turvey is definitely there, but ideally you want at least one guy to have bonkers pace. I’d hope De Vries could be that guy.

#19 juicy sushi

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Posted 14 May 2022 - 11:35

Some unofficial livery renders by Chris Paul Design

It’s not bad. It’s not quite the Nissan or Jag concept liveries which I desperately hope they run, but it’s not bad.

Edited by juicy sushi, 14 May 2022 - 11:35.


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#20 Ragamuffin

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Posted 14 May 2022 - 11:43

Great news. All that racing heritage can only be good for FE, which always seems to be on the brink of being on the brink of extinction.



#21 Anja

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Posted 14 May 2022 - 11:44

McLaren is building quite an impressive motorsport presence for such a relatively small company. 



#22 Ben1445

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Posted 14 May 2022 - 17:20

I guess the only thing missing is that LMDh, which Zak says in his heart he wants to do, but he has always said that the financials have to make sense before they can do any program

#23 Sam1

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Posted 14 May 2022 - 17:40

I guess the only thing missing is the next statement the merc are selling up there small stake in therecf1 team

#24 ARTGP

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Posted 14 May 2022 - 17:47


 

I guess the only thing missing is the next statement the merc are selling up there small stake in therecf1 team

 

 

Not happening: Mercedes confirms continuing commitment to F1 | Autocar

 

 

 

He also talked about the surge in interest in the sport among younger viewers as being key to Mercedes’ continued involvement, saying: “It's growing significantly, especially in the younger demographics. The Netflix Drive to Survive series has been a game-changer in that. So we're happy to be part of that show and be one of the forces in Formula 1, exploiting it both for our technological development but also for marketing. As far as we’re concerned, the sport is going to have a bright future.”

Edited by ARTGP, 14 May 2022 - 17:47.


#25 Rumblestrip

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Posted 15 May 2022 - 10:17

I still don't quite understand why it makes sense for McLaren to join FE but for Mercedes to leave. 

 

Is it the cost cap? It's obviously an attractive situation for McLaren, but do Mercedes feel that if they can't outspend their rivals they don't think they'll challenge for wins?  :confused:



#26 BRG

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Posted 15 May 2022 - 10:55

It's what manufacturers do.   Enter in a storm of PR flannel, outspend the rest, win or sometimes fail miserably (hello Toyota  :wave: ) then get bored and flounce off leaving someone else to mop up the mess.  



#27 Ben1445

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Posted 15 May 2022 - 10:56

I still don't quite understand why it makes sense for McLaren to join FE but for Mercedes to leave. 

 

Is it the cost cap? It's obviously an attractive situation for McLaren, but do Mercedes feel that if they can't outspend their rivals they don't think they'll challenge for wins?  :confused:

 

The cost caps for the first two seasons of Gen3 have been set at €13m per season for teams and €25m for manufacturers across a two year period. So right off the bat I suppose McLaren is looking at €13m per season as a customer powertrain team here whilst Mercedes (had they stayed) would be looking at €25.5m a season to run both the race team and pay for the powertrain development. 

 

But then it's also the case that Mercedes took the decision to leave in August 2021, months before the cost caps were finally agreed and announced that December. At the time they were estimated to be one of, if not the biggest, spender in the paddock, where annual budgets had been rumoured to rise as high as €55-65m.

 

The 2020-21 FE Season was - frankly - a bit of a mess. Qualifying and by extension many of the races descended into a complete lottery, sporting penalties were being handed all over the place for the most minor of infractions and energy reduction rules were both confusing and caused significant controversy at Valencia. It's absolutely not the season you want to have if you're trying to convince a big spender who's executive board is turning a bit skeptical to stay. 

 

This season we're seeing vast improvements because of FE's efforts to address those issues. New qualifying format, penalties are a near non-issue and a new extra-time rule see to that. In more of a longer term sense, the cost caps address concerns over the growth in the levels of manufacturer spending relative to the growth in realised returns. But none of that was a done-deal when Mercedes executives met in August of 2021. 

 

McLaren's viewpoint is probably quite different. They're seeing how FE has responded to the 2020-21 crisis. They know what the total spending bill is going to be and they know they can strike a deal to buy competitive powertrains. The race-team operation they're buying are proven winners and reigning title champions, so the chances of success are high. Tie that in with the McLaren social media and marketing presence and you might be onto something good. 


Edited by Ben1445, 15 May 2022 - 11:26.


#28 r4mses

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Posted 16 May 2022 - 00:26

Another huge name joining the serie, makes sense as they're already competing in Extreme E as well

Next season is going to be awesome with the new car, new teams, new faces.

Ronsenqvist rumored to switch back from Indy to Formula E.

.

 

"Another" huge name? Besides... eh Porsche :D and, if we're generous, Jaguar (who didn't achieve anything in high class motorsports since... well, decades ago?)



#29 Ben1445

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Posted 16 May 2022 - 11:16

I do think this is really significant and positive news for Formula E. 

 

The big name manufacturer entires caused a real splash on entry (and in some exits) but I don't think we've actually seen a well known racing team from other arenas put their hat in the ring since the earliest Formula E days when the likes of Andretti, ABT, DAMS, Dragon and Aguri lent the then fledgling series some level of credibility. That's actually quite a long time ago now - even though it feels like yesterday. 

 

As alluded to already, manufactures always come and go but it's the independent race teams who really underpin a championship. Formula E have for the most part been able to retain their core group of independents, but adding to them hasn't been so forthcoming. That has changed with this announcement, and in terms of reputation, recognition and reach you don't get an awful lot bigger than McLaren Racing. 



#30 Ben1445

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Posted 16 May 2022 - 13:38

Rene Rast closing in on Formula E Return with McLaren

https://the-race.com...n-with-mclaren/



#31 Muppetmad

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Posted 16 May 2022 - 14:14

That'd be excellent news for all involved: Rast was great, and it's a shame he was left out in the cold when Audi pulled out.



#32 Ben1445

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Posted 16 May 2022 - 14:39

I still can't quite get my head around Rast being in line for his dream job in the LMP1 program before Audi axed it, then being drafted into the Audi FE team before they axed that too and then getting himself back in at WRT as part of their LMP2 program ahead of the team's expected tie-up with Audi for their LMDh ... before that too gets axed.



#33 juicy sushi

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Posted 16 May 2022 - 17:11

So, going by that article, McLaren are looking at Rast, and if De Vries does go, one of Sette Camara, Dennis, Turvey, and Guenter.  

 

If I were picking, I would have a hard time choosing which of those 4 would be the better choice.  It's very hard to know for sure how much their cars this year are the limiting factors.


Edited by juicy sushi, 16 May 2022 - 17:13.


#34 thegamer23

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Posted 16 May 2022 - 17:24

Turvey have always been in the McLaren family, he has tonnes of FE experience, he's a safe & fast pair of hands, and never had a chance to prove himself in a Top Team.

 

Would love to see him in the McLaren to be honest, paired with a fast young kid.


Edited by thegamer23, 16 May 2022 - 17:25.


#35 juicy sushi

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Posted 16 May 2022 - 17:25

Turvey have always been in the McLaren family, he has tonnes of FE experience, he's a safe & fast pair of hands, and never had a chance to prove himself in a Top Team.

Would love to see him in the McLaren to be honest.

I think McLaren might want more than a safe pair of hands though.  I think they want that extra bit of pace that now seems to matter since we have the duel qualifying format.



#36 RSRally

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Posted 16 May 2022 - 21:02

So, going by that article, McLaren are looking at Rast, and if De Vries does go, one of Sette Camara, Dennis, Turvey, and Guenter.

If I were picking, I would have a hard time choosing which of those 4 would be the better choice. It's very hard to know for sure how much their cars this year are the limiting factors.

Sette Camara is out of a drive at the end of the season and definitely deserves a chace in a better car. The others mentioned i'd imagine are pretty safe in their current teams if they want to stay. I feel NIO are on the up so i'd quite like to see Turvey come good there.

Edited by RSRally, 16 May 2022 - 21:02.


#37 kumo7

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Posted 17 May 2022 - 08:09

nice move,... Mercedes . M<cLaren.

huumm...



#38 Ben1445

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Posted 17 May 2022 - 08:30

What I am interested to know is how Zak Brown and co believe this would benefit McLaren Racing as a whole. The press release says they expect to gain 'a competitive advantage through a greater understanding of EV racing' - presumably that's across a range of potential future programs/rulesets but we also have F1 reportedly moving towards a much higher powered ERS from 2026 of comparable levels to FE Gen3.

 

Some good reporting on that angle would be really welcome 



#39 frosty125

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Posted 17 May 2022 - 09:50

Long term there will be a point that FE and F1 merge. Competing in both formula has an advantage. But in the short term I bet there are lessons being learnt in FE which can contribute to performance in F1.

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#40 Disgrace

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Posted 17 May 2022 - 10:06

I sure hope not.



#41 kumo7

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Posted 17 May 2022 - 11:05

As future of the automotive industry look towards full electrification, it is nothing more than advantageous to show it by racing series. 

McLaren aiming to replicate Ferrari?

 

Never the less, recent strategy from Mercedes looking also interesting.

Say,... Mercedes gives up to become the full works F1 efforts, and concentrate on PU, through which McLaren benefit to become the works outfit.

Mercedes sells the team to the new comer such as,... er,... Andretti? er,... VAG?



#42 Ben1445

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Posted 17 May 2022 - 11:10

I'm pretty lukewarm on the merger talk, and I'm currently pretty doubtful that we'll see them become one championship unless there's significant shifts in conventional wisdom - be it electrical powertrain capability or performance expectations from a Grand Prix event. But that's not impossible. 

 

On the other hand, I think technological convergence whereby electric powertrains/batteries are of increasing core importance to motorsport (including F1) is entirely reasonable and already becoming increasingly obvious.

 

It's also entirely reasonable to suggest that FOM could chose to buy Formula E outright and then just run it as a separate championship within the same family. Though I think the risk there for FE is to be inherently seen as a second priority, supporting series to Formula One which could place a limit on its potential. I'd argue that Formula E's independence from other championships is actually one of its strong suits. 

 

Ultimately, it's all a very open question in my view. I'd just hope that the answers to these questions are constructive and not destructive.  


Edited by Ben1445, 17 May 2022 - 11:10.


#43 balmybaldwin

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Posted 17 May 2022 - 21:46

So, going by that article, McLaren are looking at Rast, and if De Vries does go, one of Sette Camara, Dennis, Turvey, and Guenter.  

 

If I were picking, I would have a hard time choosing which of those 4 would be the better choice.  It's very hard to know for sure how much their cars this year are the limiting factors.

Guenther was pretty good in the BMW a few years ago if I remember correctly, plus was good in F2



#44 Ben1445

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Posted 17 May 2022 - 22:25

Günther has the speed and the intelligence, he’s just fallen a little short in consistency really - but no reason that can’t be fixed I guess

#45 juicy sushi

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Posted 17 May 2022 - 23:35

He does, but I think Dennis was better than him in the same car.



#46 Ben1445

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Posted 02 June 2022 - 08:34

Some more detail from The Race here about McLaren's plans in FE. 

Mercedes Takeover is Just The Start For Mclaren in Formula E
https://the-race.com...n-in-formula-e/

 

First couple of seasons will establish the brand in the championship using the expected customer Nissan powertrains, after which point a few different pathways open up. 

 

McLaren Applied Technology was sold a year ago, so it's perhaps not as easy to rope them in as a manufacturer as it was. Other opportunities may involve teaming up with Lucid Motors for a Gen4 powertrain, who were said to be in serious discussions for Gen3 but chose to focus on the supply of the Gen3 front powertrain kit (FPK) through their Atieva technology arm. Atieva worked closely with McLaren Applied on the Gen2 battery supply. 



#47 Ben1445

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Posted 23 June 2022 - 08:18

The powertrain supply deal with Nissan has been confirmed 

https://www.fiaformu...powertrain-gen3

 

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