Why are McLaren Joining Lewis Hamilton in Extreme E?

Published 06/13/2021, 12:36 AM EDT
Formula One F1 – Portuguese Grand Prix – Algarve International Circuit – Portimao, Portugal – April 30, 2021 McLaren Chief Executive Officer Zak Brown talks in the Team Principals Press Conference FIA/Handout via REUTERS ATTENTION EDITORS – THIS IMAGE HAS BEEN SUPPLIED BY A THIRD PARTY. NO RESALES. NO ARCHIVES


Over the past few years, there has been a steady push towards electric power units. In 2014, Formula E was born and the all-electric series is still going strong with a number of prominent manufacturers. Earlier this year, Extreme E was born and it is the electric counterpart to any rallying series. Now the McLaren Group has officially announced that they will enter Extreme E in 2022.

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CEO Zak Brown said, “McLaren is entering Extreme E because we think it’s a fascinating championship. We have a long history in pioneering and innovation, which is clearly what the Extreme E championship’s been founded on. Sustainability and diversity are two very important issues in the world today. We feel we can use the racing platform to put on a great show, but also to accelerate our learning and sustainability.”

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Admittedly, Formula E and Extreme E founder Alejandro Agag is quite excited to see McLaren enter. According to him, the brand practically represents motorsport. Furthermore, Agag acknowledged that the British manufacturer has a vision of the future.

McLaren will meet familiar faces on the Extreme E grid

On an interesting note, Lewis Hamilton, Jenson Button and Nico Rosberg have all fielded Extreme E teams. On the manufacturer front, McLaren joins the likes of Cupra and GMC. Meanwhile, Lotus Engineering boasts of a technical partnership with Button’s JBXE outfit.

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Brown’s interest also comes because of his own personal stake. To be precise, the American CEO is the co-owner of the United Autosports team. The McLaren CEO entered the team in partnership with ex-McLaren Formula 1 driver Michael Andretti and his own team Andretti Autosport.

Formula One F1 – Bahrain Grand Prix – Bahrain International Circuit, Sakhir, Bahrain – March 26, 2021 McLaren Chief Executive Officer Zak Brown during the press conference FIA/Handout via REUTERS ATTENTION EDITORS – THIS IMAGE HAS BEEN SUPPLIED BY A THIRD PARTY. NO RESALES. NO ARCHIVES

However, he insisted that he merely plays the role of a ‘silent partner’ at the United Autosports team. In the meantime, his main focus will be on his fledgling McLaren Extreme E team and their progress in the sport. It is also worth noting that McLaren Applied was supposed to be the original standardised battery system supplier for Extreme E. However, the sport decided to opt for Williams Advanced Engineering instead.

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Dhruv George

11741 articles

Dhruv George is a senior Formula One and NASCAR analyst for EssentiallySports, having authored nearly 12000 articles spanning different sports like F1, NASCAR, Tennis, NFL, and eSports. He graduated with a PG Diploma in Journalism from the Xavier Institute of Communications. Dhruv has also conducted interviews with F1 driver Pierre Gasly and Moto2 rider Tony Arbolino.

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