Formula E – After a year with Venturi, Lucas di Grassi will now switch to join Mahindra Racing for the start of the Gen 3 era.
Formula E’s first ever race winner, di Grassi, made his first team move at the end of last season when Audi, who the Brazilian had driven with since season 1, decided to leave the series.
Audi had been aligned with the Abt Sportsline team since the early days before becoming the German marques factory team in Formula E. Abt sat out season 8 but will be back, and powered by Mahindra, from season 9.
Di Grassi teamed up with the Mercedes powered Venturi team for this year and the partnership has seen di Grassi regularly in the points and on the podium three times including a win last time out in London.
The season three champion will now head to Mahindra and join Oliver Rowland in the Indian team’s artemp at the first Gen3 World Championship.
“Joining Mahindra represents a new challenge in my career,” di Grassi said, “and the timing could not be better: with the introduction of Gen3 in season nine of the FIA Formula E World Championship, everyone is starting from scratch.
“Having a seven-year relationship with ABT Sportsline, in which we won the world championship together, will give us a good springboard – the team will use the Mahindra Racing powered by ZF powertrain and this additional data and my close connection to the engineers will stand us in good stead.
“The short-term target is to win races and long-term is to help Mahindra Racing to win the world championship and become an icon in electric racing worldwide. We will build an exciting and sustainable future together.”
Mahindra Racing’s CEO and Team Principal, Dilbagh Gill, believes that di Grassi’s experience amd passion for green mobility makes him the perfect addition to the Mahindra family.
“There’s no doubt that Lucas is one of the greatest Formula E drivers in the history of the sport,” Gill said, “the stats and the silverware do the talking but, for us, his appeal is much wider than that. We are the only team that has been net carbon zero since inception, earning us the title of The Greenest Team in Motorsport, and it is fundamental to our existence that we are driving forward technological developments in electric mobility with passion and knowledge both on- and off-track.
“We believe Lucas is perfectly positioned to do this and we are ready to get him bedded into our ground-breaking Gen3 programme within the coming weeks.
“Our ambition is for Mahindra Racing to become FIA Formula E World Champions and Lucas’s experience and drive will be instrumental in achieving this.”