Formula E
Formula E
R
Diriyah ePrix II
27 Feb
Practice 1 in
09 Hours
:
13 Minutes
:
19 Seconds
R
Rome ePrix
10 Apr
Next event in
41 days
24 Apr
Next event in
55 days
R
Monaco ePrix
08 May
Next event in
69 days
R
Marrakesh ePrix
22 May
Next event in
83 days
05 Jun
Next event in
97 days
R
Santiago ePrix II
06 Jun
Next event in
98 days

Di Grassi wants to stay in Formula E after Audi exit

Audi driver Lucas di Grassi has “no hard feelings” about the manufacturer’s decision to exit Formula E at the end of the season but wishes to remain in the championship.

shares
comments
Di Grassi wants to stay in Formula E after Audi exit

The German manufacturer announced on Monday it would withdraw the factory team from FE at the end of the 2020/21 season in favour of a Dakar Rally programme. 

It will also return to top-flight sportscar racing via the forthcoming LMDh regulations that from 2023 will run across both IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship and the FIA World Endurance Championship.  

Audi has confirmed it will continue to supply its FE powertrain, now developed in-house for the first time, to customer team Envision Virgin Racing until the end of 2023. 

When asked if 2016-17 champion di Grassi wished to remain in FE, which gains FIA World Championship status for 2020-21, the Brazilian told Motorsport.com: “I would like to stay in Formula E, but not necessarily with Envision Virgin.

“I need to discuss the possibilities and opportunities. Of course, I love racing Formula E, I like being here, I feel at home. If I could continue my career in Formula E, I will try to.” 

Lucas Di Grassi, Audi Sport ABT Schaeffler, Audi e-tron FE06

Lucas Di Grassi, Audi Sport ABT Schaeffler, Audi e-tron FE06

Photo by: Alastair Staley / Motorsport Images

Di Grassi, a 10-time race winner in FE, added that although he wanted Audi to remain in FE, he had no bitter feelings about the decision to exit.  

“Motorsport is made out of cycles,” he said. “If you see that most of the teams in Formula 1, they go in, they go out, they come back. I have no hard feelings.

"It’s a group decision, it’s a strategy. Of course, I wish Audi could continue Formula E - I brought them here, I brought the team over from LMP1, I came over. But coming back to LMDh, for me it’s also a project which excites me a lot.” 

Both Audi FE drivers – three-time DTM champion Rene Rast and ex-Virgin Formula 1 driver di Grassi – have contracts with the overall manufacturer motorsport programme, rather than deals specifically to race in FE. This could pave the way for both to transfer to the nascent LMDh sportscar project in future years.  

Di Grassi, a three-time podium finisher in the Le Mans 24 Hours for Audi, added: “My commitment with Audi is in the long term.  

“They are far away of deciding what is the [LMDh] driver line-up, but Audi has some quality drivers right now - all of us with a lot of sportscar expertise. You can argue I have more experience in sportscars than in any other series that they could have gone to.  

“I have interest to stay with Audi and commit for the long term. They gave me my first contract after F1 in 2012. My career really went up after I joined them so I owe them a lot.  

“The main focus for me is really is win this world championship and to win races and focus on this year. As things progress, we will understand the broader picture and move ahead.” 

Related video

The logic behind Audi’s surprise change of course

Previous article

The logic behind Audi’s surprise change of course

Next article

Gunther quickest on final day of Valencia Formula E test

Gunther quickest on final day of Valencia Formula E test
Load comments

About this article

Series Formula E
Drivers Lucas di Grassi
Teams Audi Sport ABT Schaeffler
Author Matt Kew
The eight major plotlines to watch in Formula E 2021 Prime

The eight major plotlines to watch in Formula E 2021

The delayed 2020-21 Formula E season gets underway this week with a double-header in Saudi Arabia. The testing times were too close to call a favourite, but that's not the only area of interest to follow as the championship enters a crucial year

Formula E
Feb 25, 2021
Why Formula E's 2021 season will be a crucial litmus test Prime

Why Formula E's 2021 season will be a crucial litmus test

As off-track politics threatens to overshadow events on it, the upcoming Formula E season is perhaps its most important since the championship's inception. And that's a shame, given that the focus should be on what promises to be its closest title fight yet.

Formula E
Feb 24, 2021
How Mercedes and Porsche can avoid a difficult second FE album Prime

How Mercedes and Porsche can avoid a difficult second FE album

Mercedes and Porsche compete to win and have done so across the board: in Formula 1, sportscars, the Dakar Rally and endurance road races - even working together to break land speed records. Next in the crosshairs is the Formula E teams' championship crown.

Formula E
Feb 17, 2021
What Formula E must do for McLaren to act on its attraction Prime

What Formula E must do for McLaren to act on its attraction

News that McLaren is formally considering a Formula E move is a much-needed boost for a series that took some punches at the end of 2020. But to allay any doubts that Zak Brown may have, FE must take action on its biggest potential stumbling block

Formula E
Jan 11, 2021
Why BMW and Audi have pulled the plug on Formula E Prime

Why BMW and Audi have pulled the plug on Formula E

BMW and Audi shocked the Formula E fraternity by announcing their departures at the end of the 2020-21 season. Overnight, the championship has been dealt something of a "wake-up call" - including questions about its relevance to manufacturers.

Formula E
Dec 3, 2020
What we learned from Formula E's Valencia test Prime

What we learned from Formula E's Valencia test

There was no shortage of intrigue surrounding Formula E's pre-season test at the Circuit Ricardo Tormo in Valencia, dominated by talk of Audi's impending exit. But it still served to whet appetites for the start of another competitive season in January

Formula E
Dec 2, 2020
The logic behind Audi’s surprise change of course Prime

The logic behind Audi’s surprise change of course

OPINION: Audi announcing its imminent Formula E departure on the eve of its first season with world championship status might come as something of a shock. But while it doesn't equate to a rejection of VW's electrification push, there is reason to it...

Formula E
Nov 30, 2020
How Formula E's pre-season test venue provides confusion and clarity Prime

How Formula E's pre-season test venue provides confusion and clarity

The Formula E grid heads to Valencia's Circuit Ricardo Tormo for pre-season testing and the track, minus the controversial chicane, leaves the circuit unrepresentative to the series' familiar street layouts but could still be a proving ground for multiple reasons.

Formula E
Nov 27, 2020