Maserati, Formula One winner in the 1950s, will compete in Formula E from 2023. It will be the first Italian brand to enter the electric world championship. The FIA-sanctioned city-based series will be starting its ninth season next year with a third-generation (Gen3) car billed as the world’s most efficient and capable of reaching speeds of 320kph.
Chief executive Davide Grasso hailed a “back to the future” first step for a 107-year-old company famed for sports luxury cars and keen to re-establish its sporting credentials. The Modena-based marque is part of Stellantis, formed last year by the merger of Fiat Chrysler and France’s PSA, and has already announced that all its models will have electric versions by 2025.
Grasso said Maserati had been working for a year with Formula E as it plans a return to the racetrack for the first time since 2010 when it competed in the GT1 sportscar championship. Nissan, Jaguar, Porsche, Mahindra, Stellantis-owned DS, and China’s Nio are the manufacturers so far signed up for 2023 when a $13 million cost cap will be in place.
Formula E chairman Alejandro Agag said the announcement was probably one of the greatest days in the history of the championship. Grasso promised to give more details on how Maserati would participate. “To have a brand as iconic as Maserati, with the racing heritage come into the electric revolution that we are pushing is really an incredible moment for Formula E.”
“Formula E will be our technological laboratory to accelerate the development of high-efficiency electrified powertrains and intelligent software for our road sports cars,” said Stellantis’ motorsport head Jean-Marc Finot.
Grasso said racing was key to the rebuilding of Maserati, and other steps would follow. An eventual return to Formula One, where Stellantis is active with the Sauber-operated Alfa Romeo team, was not excluded. Formula E lost BMW and Audi last season, and Mercedes will be leaving at the end of this year, but Agag said it remained as relevant as ever to manufacturers.
“It’s great to have an Italian team,” he added. “It has taken a few years but I think it couldn’t be a better brand than Maserati. “We have already had a great race in Rome and a great partner on the broadcasting side with Mediaset and Sky but now we have an Italian team.”
With inputs from Reuters