The number of teams that have decided to engage in Extreme E continues to grow. Today, in fact, the announcement of the presence of McLaren Racing has arrived starting from the next season of the championship entirely disputed with electric SUVs.
Baptized by championship co-founder Alejandro Agag as: “probably the biggest news in Extreme E’s short history”, McLaren joins the Cupra and GMC brands as the third manufacturer involved, while Lotus Engineering boasts a technical partnership with JBXE on Jenson Button team.
This decision to enter follows a detailed assessment of the series made by McLaren, not unlike what is currently being done to evaluate the commitment to Formula E with the Gen3 rules that will be applied starting from the 2022-23 championship.
McLaren Racing CEO Zak Brown told select media outlets, including Motorsport.com, that no final decision has been made regarding a participation in Formula E or the WEC, while for Extreme E the free slot was about to be sold shortly and the Group could not afford the luxury of waiting another six months before announcing entry.
The electric series, according to what has been declared, has satisfied the “strategic, economic and operational criteria” for McLaren Racing and an entry into the championship will allow the team to reach new “fans and partners”.
The Extreme E team will use both existing staff now out of the Formula 1 program, as well as specialized resources from the automotive side.
Brown said: “From the moment the birth of the Extreme E was announced we have closely followed the progress of the series. Our attention was immediately drawn to the innovative format of this platform and in particular the ability it gives us to accelerate and stimulate our general sustainability agenda, which shares the same priorities of decarbonisation, waste reduction, diversity and equality ”.
“While Formula 1 will always remain at the center of our world, as will IndyCar and Esports, our entry into Extreme E represents an addition to the McLaren Racing franchise and will help us support all of our programs.”
“We will be competing against big names that have made F1 and IndyCar history but, like all the series we race in, the goal is clear: we are there to win.”
Extreme E co-founder Alejandro Agag said: “Having McLaren on board, a brand that symbolizes the highest level of innovation in both automotive and racing, is a huge confirmation that what we have accomplished in our first two races. season 1 has already created a real impact in motorsport. “
Agag said the championship will be limited to 12 teams due to the size constraints of the RMS St. Helena, which carries most of the cargo to each location.